Sat, Jul

Wrexham midfielder Carlos Edwards will soon be back in national colours.

The former Defence Force player who recently returned to action from a serious knee injury which kept him out since last July, is among overseas-based pros recalled by National Coach Bertille St Clair to be in the squad leading up to next month’s World Cup qualifier against United States.

The players called include Coventry City Stern John, Crewe Alexandra goalkeeper Clayton Ince, Portsmouth’s Shaka Hislop, Dundee defender Brent Sancho, Southampton’s Kenwyne Jones who will all be here for the friendly matches against Haiti on February 1 and 3 while Glasgow Rangers defender Marvin Andrews will be in the squad leading up to the clash with the United States on February 9.

Edwards, who scored on his return to action in a Reserve encounter against Bury earlier this month, is scheduled here on February 6 but all the other overseas pros, with maybe the exception of Andrews, will be available for the two friendlies against Haiti.

The other overseas players already here include Dallas FC striker Cornell Glen, Kansas City Wizards’ Scott Sealy, Avery John of New England Revolution, Atlanta Silverbacks midfielder Leslie Fitzpatrick and China-based duo Anthony Rougier and Gary Glasgow. With the home-based pros also pressing for selection, St Clair is expected to finalize his 18-man squad for the USA match during the week leading up to it.

Edwards is anxious to be back on the pitch. “It feels great to be playing again. I mean, it is early days and you never know. I may find a bit of stiffness in the knee as I go on but for the past two games it has felt okay. My fitness has not been a problem because while working on the knee, I was also in the gym doing fitness training ready to get back playing again. The progress I was making with my knee was going hand in hand with my fitness,” Edwards said in England.

It is to be noted that technical consultant Graham Taylor has been in regular contact with some of the overseas pros and their club management which has led to a smooth process thus far in acquiring the services of the players for the upcoming matches.

“I have been in touch with certain players on the request of Bertille (St Clair) and we have had some very good conversations. These guys, like the home-based players are very much looking forward to playing for their country and they all want to give it their best. I am fortunate that I can have good looks at what these players are doing in Europe and if I can’t see them in a particular match I can then easily find out from someone what they have been up to and this is where my assistance comes into play for Bertille and the Trinidad and Tobago National team.,” Taylor told TTFF Media. “I have seen the home-based players so I now have a better idea of the overall picture and it’s just a matter of getting it all right for the big matches.”

Meantime, the second friendly against Haiti will now be played at the Hasely Crawford Stadium on February 3 after attempts to get the Oval proved futile. TTFF special adviser Jack Warner met with International Soca Monarch promoter William Munroe on Friday at CONCACAF office to see if it was possible to allow the game to be played but the latter explained that the stage would take three days to go up which meant that it would be impossible to play the game on the Thursday which is the day before the Soca Monarch Finals. Munroe still added that he would attempt to come to some resolution but the TTFF has decided to shift the game to the Stadium.