National team midfielder Densill Theobald, a member of this country’s team which played at the 2006 World Cup, is setting his sights on taking a leading role for the “Soca Warriors” in the upcoming Digicel Caribbean Cup.
Theobald, now attached to Caledonia AIA, was one of the younger and lesser experienced players in the starting eleven in Germany but with time and the experience under his belt, Theobald realizes now that much of the responsibility on him, particularly with the overseas-based pros not around for next month’s tournament.
Head coach Wim Rijsbergen realizes the importance of having a fit and influential Theobald in his team as well.
“Definitely I know a lot of the responsibility is on me. It’s not going to be any easier because most of the regular guys are not around for these games but I think it’s a chance for some of the others like myself to step it up a bit. I think if I can use all the experience gained in the World Cup and pass it on and lead by example as well then I would have played my part. We obviously want to win the Digicel Cup,” Theobald told TTFF Media.
He reflected on how qualifying and playing at the World Cup changed him.
“In a lot of ways it influenced me both on and off the pitch. It made me realize that I am a role model for the younger ones so I had to change the way I did things. The benefits as a player is that you get more respect when you go into matches and we have to maintain that and that is why as a country we have to stamp our authority in the Digicel Cup and then the Gold Cup,” he added.
“Just recently we made a year since qualifying for the World Cup. It’s a memorable day. It’s still like a dream. It’s like your wedding day. It still feels like it happened yesterday and you are asking yourself if it really happened,” Theobald smiled.
The former Malick Senior Comprehensive player is hoping too that the fans, particularly upcoming players turn out and view the T&T team in action next month starting against Barbados on January 12 at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.
“Definitely I want to say to the young ones that to keep dreaming because without that, life isn’t worth living. We wouldn’t be working hard on a everyday basis to be where we want to be. Look at me today from Nelson Street to Nuremburg. The sky is the limit,” Theobald said.
And hopefully other supporters will not wait until 2009 comes around before joining the bandwagon for South African 2010.
“I hope it can keep developing, hopefully the business sector and the government can keep playing a major role and not just wait until success is around the corner, the same goes for other sports. And it can start with the Digicel Cup because this is a good level of competition as well,” he added.
Theobald will resumed training on Friday with the rest of the players preparing for the Digicel Cup at the Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva.