Soca Warriors Online (SWO) recently caught up with T&Ts newest recruit to the Senior National Team and Central F.C.'s Darren Mitchell and also grabbed the first press interview with the 23 year old attacking midfielder.
The Princes Town born midfielder, who is known by his teammates as "Chucky" is thankful to the T&T coaches for giving him the opportunity to play for his country and, also to Central FC for opening the doors for him.
Below are a few questions with Mitchell.
SW: Chucky, congratulations on being called up to the T&T squad for the upcoming friendly games against Belize and Peru. Were you surprised to be called up by T&T? Are you eager to play for your country?
DM: Wow, yeah, I'm still trying to get my head around it all. Everything's happened so fast. As a footballer, of course, you dream of representing your country, but I really wasn't expecting to be selected right now. I know I'm in good form at the moment, but there are lots of good players in the Pro League, so I'm pleased to have been chosen. I want to say thanks to the T&T coaches for giving me the chance and Central FC for opening the doors as well.
SW: Are you excited about going to Peru and what do you know about the country?
DM: Yeah, it's mad. I never even thought about going to other countries to play football. I can't wait to get to Peru, but I don't really know what to expect. All I know about Peru is watching them play T&T last month. It will be a tough game, because they're fast and strong. We just have to concentrate on keeping our shape and taking our chances when we get them.
SW: What do you feel you can bring different to the T&T team?
DM: Well, I like to play more on the outside, so I hope I can stretch the defenders and create space and chances for the strikers. But, the Coach here (at Central FC- Terry Fenwick) likes me to play inside as well, to pull the defence towards me and create space for Jason (Marcano) and Johan (Peltier). I'll just do the job that the coaches asked me to do, and give 100% so I don't let anybody down. I'll give 100% for my country.
SW: What is your favorite position on the field?
DM: As I said, I prefer to play on the outside. I like to run at defenders, cut inside and put them on their back foot. They have to make a challenge and I've won a few penalties that way. But then again, I could cut outside and make some room in the box and send over a cross. I like to keep them guessing!
SW: Give us a little history about yourself, like where were you born? When is your birthday? Which other clubs you played for?
DM: I was born in Princes Town on 10th January 1990, but I moved to Tobago when I was at school. I actually remember growing up in Trinidad with James Saunders as a neighbour! I think he's taking some credit for my career, but I'm not too sure about that (laughs)! I played in the Super League for Phoenix 1976. I have to thank Coach Terry Williams there for all the help he gave me and for letting me move to Central when Mr Sancho approached him.
SW: How is the experience playing in the Pro League and for Terry Fenwick thus far?
DM: It's still exciting for me. There are lots of good players in the Pro League and every match I love the challenge of taking on these players. At the time, you just play your game, but sometimes afterwards I think "Boy, they couldn't live with you out there!" I try not to get over confident, but it's a great feeling knowing that you can perform against these guys. The coach is really supportive. He likes to shout a lot, but I think he brings out the best in players. As a team, we are afraid of no one and I think next year we'll win a lot of trophies.
SW: Who are some of the players you admire in the League?
DM: There are so many. I saw a few of them when we played against Pro League teams in the F.A.Trophy when I was at Phoenix. I think players like Daneil Cyrus at W Connection are really hard to play against. And you see the goals scored by Cornell Glen, Devon Modeste, and Devorn Josling and Richard Roy at Army, and I'd like to hit the net that often. But my game is more about creating than scoring, but I'd love to be T&T's version of Ryan Giggs!!
SW: How did you get the name Chucky?
DM: My old coach called me Chucky because he said I was always miserable! I'm not sure exactly why, but the name stuck. But I don't think I was miserable, I was probably just quiet until I got to know everyone.
SW: What is your goal in life as far as football goes?
DM: Obviously, I want to play as many games as I can for T&T. I remember 2006 and I'd love to play in a World Cup finals. Right now, I'd love to win a cup with Central FC and be part of a league winning team next season. But I just want to keep playing and be happy. I do want to set examples for youngsters, especially in Tobago. Nobody comes to watch you play in Tobago and there are loads of good kids there. I'd like them to see how lucky I've been so it gives them hope that if they work hard they can make it too.
SW: Chucky, thanks for your time and all of SWO wish you a long and successful International career.
DM: Thanks, it's really nice to know that the supporters out there are interested. I know a lot of your people are in America, so I'm hoping to see them at the Gold Cup, please God.
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