Rambo: More opportunities for competition will benefit the global game

  • Hong Kong Women’s Head Coach says the increased competition at elite level will help everyone in the game

  • Brazil national says accelerating the growth of the game is of paramount importance

  • Collaboration is key in consultation process being led by Jill Ellis

Ricardo Rambo says proposals being discussed by members of the TAG have the potential to help accelerate competitiveness within women’s football across the world and increase participation among the next generation of players, coaches, referees and administrators.

Rambo is part of the widespread consultation process being led by double FIFA Women’s World Cup-winning coach Jill Ellis. The process is being run in parallel to a process to further improve elements of the men’s game, led by FIFA’s Chief of Global Development Arsène Wenger. Both were established to collate feedback on how best to increase competitive balance, provide more opportunities and allow higher global participation across both the sport.

Rambo, who has over 15 years coaching experience – including four in his most recent role at the helm of the Hong Kong women’s national team – said the upcoming cycle change for the international calendar represents an opportunity to accelerate further an already successful period of growth for women’s football.

He praised FIFA for its endeavour and said it is important to recognise the need for continued global improvement of women’s football through various initiatives, including the optimisation of the international calendar – in a way that benefits every level of the game.

“I think it’s important to be heard, to put discussions on the table to help people’s understanding of different areas in this group,” he said. “Also understanding that every culture is different in every country. I think that is where FIFA comes in to give support and also a better understanding.”

He continued: “We are helping to give many opportunities to girls and women’s football. What we are doing is giving them the opportunity to have a dream, to have a career, to develop their career, and this is where we put ourselves in place.

“I think the project itself will help us achieve these goals by giving these players more opportunities to play, more opportunities to have more competition on the pitch. This is an important part of the development of every player.”

As part of the comprehensive consultation process, FIFA is also meeting with other women’s football stakeholders including the member associations, confederations, clubs, leagues and teams.

Rambo, a Brazil national, says the opportunity for teams from Asia and South America to participate in more frequent and more competitive matches can only be positive when looking to accelerate its growth. He also emphasised the importance of global collaboration in the reform process.

“Others can share in building the future by discussing, creating different ideas, being part of the programme, creating different programmes to improve the future of our football,” he continued.

“This is the way we have to work – together, understanding, making changes when you need to make changes – but all looking at the same aim: making football even better every day.”

The process being led by Ellis is also consulting and advising on several other current issues across the game, including the absence of a mandatory rest period for players, the excessive number of travels and the constant interruption of domestic leagues.