After a year-long battle between the Normalisation Committee (NC) and the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF), it seems as though the matter of ownership over the headquarters has been settled. In response, FIFA has decided to lift the suspension off of Pakistan for international games, expanding the scope of the sport nationally. The hope now is that petty feuds between two authoritative bodies stay far away from football and its players, each of which possess no stake in administrative issues.

The matter began a year ago when PFF’s lease agreement was cancelled because the body was giving a portion of the headquarter for rent to Revenue Board, violating the provision in its agreement stating that subleasing was against the law. The deadlock remained between the Normalisation Committee which had original ownership of the headquarters, and the PFF. In the midst of all this, it was the sport and its players that suffered the most by being deprived of opportunities, facilities and any kind of development.

FIFA took an active part in mediating the conflict and paving a way for the NC to regain control of the headquarters so that soon enough, Pakistan could join the ranks of countries with exceptional football teams. There is no denying that talent is plenty here, it is just a matter of harvesting and honing it. Suspensions were imposed to further incentivise the two to come to a resolution but to no avail. For an entire year, the back and forth remained and any progress remained stagnant.

Now, with the NC being given back control of the headquarters and the PFF finally being ousted, suspensions can end and actual work can begin to provide the platform to players which was previously promised. This should serve as an example of how gross negligence should never be tolerated and ultimately, will always be corrected. However, what we can do is be cognizant of the price that getting into such long disputes has. Stunted development and depriving potential athletes of an avenue through which they can make a living is deplorable and the hope now is that such unnecessary conflicts will not stand in the way of Pakistani football.