Trinidad and Tobago captain Kenwyne Jones gave a thumbs up to all the members of the National Senior team on their opening 2-1 victory over Guatemala in Guatemala City on Friday night.
“First of all I have to give the entire team and staff credit. I think we have a task in mind tonight. Coming away to a place like Guatemala is always difficult for us. We know that we had to be patient and soak up a lot of pressure and if we got the first goal we would be able to score more because Guatemala would have to push and we could play them on the counter. Tonight we executed the perfect away performance,” Jones told TTFA Media.
“We had a little team meeting before and I expressed to the team that we are a different group. Of course there is a history of teams coming to Guatemala and not doing so well but I do believe in the entire squad. I believe that the work we’ve been doing for the last three years had all culminated to this point. We had no reason to fear and not believe in the way we could play and not have confidence in our talent. It was just about us going out and playing as a unit and making the game about us.
“The goal came at a great time after Khaleem’s effort went in so sweetly. Funny enough as we broke, Joevin got the ball and two or three Guatemalan players went to him and I just peeled off the back and he lifted his head and gave me a beautiful ball,” Jones added.
Midfielder Khaleem Hyland was also ecstatic with the win but warned that the Warriors would not get carried away.
“We want to thank the Lord for this day. I think it was a great fighting effort from the whole team. We knew we had to weather the storm and we did great to come away with the result.
“The coach changed around things a bit. We were losing the battle a bit and we wanted to go a bit more solid in midfield. It was a great pass and I took my opportunity. I saw the far post so I just placed it. Before the game Sheldon (Bateau) told me don’t go for power but just placed it, “ Hyland said.
“The win is very important. The journey has just started and this just one hurdle we’ve passed and now we have to keep focused and go back home and give the public another good performance and something more to celebrate,” he added.
Goalkeeper Jan Michael Williams was solid throughout but would have liked to have kept a clean sheet.
“It was unfortunate that we conceded that late. But overall I will take this result. We dug deep and I am really pleased to see how the boys pulled it off in extremely difficult conditions which is what we were prepared to face,” Williams said.
“Now we have to recover well and focus on Tuesday’s game. But I think this start is just what we needed and I am really looking forward to see us continue from here,” Williams added.