Soca Warriors experienced duo, Carlos Edwards and Stern John could well be playing their final internantional match when T&T meets Guyana in their final 2014 Brazil FIFA World Cup second round Concacaf Group B qualifier today.
The match takes place at the Hasely Crawford Stadium, Mucurapo from 5pm but will have no impact on the four-team group as the visitors have alreay seald top spot and qualification to the Concacaf semifinal round after a 2-1 win at home on Friday night.
Edwards, of Ipswich Town, is already 33 and has don the national colours 81 times scoring four goals after making his debut at age 20.
By the time the next campaign kicks off for the 2018 World Cup in 2015/2016 Edwards will be 37 years while John, is already 35 having played 115 times and scored a record 70 goals for T&T to be fifth on the all-time international list of goalscorers worldwide.
John is five goals off Kuwait’s Bashar Abdullah (75 in 134 matches), Brazilian legend Pele (77 goals in 93 matches), Hungary’s Puskas (84 goals in 85 matches) and leader Ali Daei of Iran who has 109 goals from 149 appearances.
Following their earlier than expected exit from World Cup qualification coach Otto Pfister led his charges during a Sunday morning session at today’smatch venue.
The one-hour session brought whatever little form of relief that was possible for skipper Kenwyne Jones and his teammates.
There was a bit of the usual banter and believe it or not, the session had its intense moments that was customary for a team that's preparing for a serious challenge with something at stake.
Playing for pride is sometimes nothing more than a convenient saying. But at least Jones and company have faced the disastrous defeat with the pain that they rightly should and now they will aim to finish on a bit of a high for whatever its worth.
“These last couple of days have been extremely challenging for us as players, for the staff and somewhat for the fans too who we’ve heard from,” Jones said. “There’s nothing more that we would like other than to turn this around but unfortunately we can’t.
We lost a match on Friday that sent us out of the campaign and now we’ve had to literally pick ourselves up and put on a brave face and get on with the preparations for this game. It’s the least we can do right now and go out there and try to win this match on Tuesday (today) and look ahead to what the future holds for our football,” the skipper said.
He mentioned that there was deep sense of sadness within the T&T camp. “It is sad that our campaign has come to such an abrupt end in the manner that it did.
I don’t think we played badly at all on Friday. It was a valiant effort but maybe it was not our bet. We had chances to score goals in the game and quite a few and that’s football. It’s not the result any or anyone that has anything to do with Trinidad football wanted. We as players are hurting just as bad as the public because our football is our livelihood and our passion,” Jones stated.
Regarding his feelings on what the future holds for the team and football in general involving the efforts on the international stage, Jones had the following to say: “We can only take it one day at a time.
There’s a lot happening in the football now that needs to be checked and it will start from the ground come up. We had the qualification in 2006 but we need to realize that is in the past now. We need to have some form of continuity.”