T&T wins two in a row.
Trinidad and Tobago registered a 2-0 victory over St Lucia yesterday in the 2014 Caribbean Cup Semi Final round match at the Ato Boldon Stadium and, as a result secured a place in the Caribbean Cup Finals in Montego Bay, Jamaica next month.
Goals were scored in both halves, Central FC midfielder Ataullah Guerra opened the scoring for T&T in the 5th minute and captain Kenwyne Jones' 66 minute item sealed it for the panmen.
Despite making 6 changes to the side that played the Dominican Republic- T&T dominated the proceedings and could have scored a handful but the Pitons escaped through some good goalkeeping and some near misses by the T&T attackers which left the scoreline respectable.
The Soca Warriors will now face Antigua & Barbuda in their third match on Sunday from 6:15pm. Antigua need only a draw to survive, a loss however, and a Dominican Republic win could be detrimental for the Antiguans.
Yesterday's CFU Results
T&T 2 v St Lucia 0
Dominican Republic 0 v Antigua & Barbuda 0
Trinidad and Tobago: - 1.Marvin Phillip (vice-capt); 4.Sheldon Bateau, 18.Yohance Marshall, 26.Alvin Jones (Yellow 51) (6.Daneil Cyrus 71st), 3.Joevin Jones (Yellow 34); 5.Kevan George, 23.Lester Peltier, 8.Khaleem Hyland (17.Leston Paul 71st), 13.Cordell Cato, 11.Ataullah Guerra; 9.Kenwyne Jones (capt), (20.Trevin Caesar 74th).
Unused Substitutes: - 21.Jan-Michael Williams (GK), 14.Andre Boucaud, 19.Carlyle Mitchell, 7.Hughtun Hector, 10.Kevin Molino.
COACH: - Stephen Hart.
St Lucia: - 1.Randy Poleon; 19.Erick Gabriel, 16.Jamil Joseph, 20.Sheldon Emmanuel (capt), 2.Kurt Frederick; 4.Perral Williams; 14.Lester Joseph (10.Zaeehaeus Polius 37th), 13.Tremain Paul, 11.Magnum Valcin (8.Everton Lambert 85th); 7.Malik St Prix (6.Eden Charles 72nd), 17.Romiel Felix.
Unused Substitutes: - 3.Gervan Janvier, 9.Gerlanne Neptunre, 15.Rickson Augustin, 21.Alton Roberts.
COACH: - Francis Lastic.
Venue: - Ato Boldon Stadium.
Game Type: - 2014 Caribbean Cup.
Attendance: - 3,000 (APPROX).
Referee: - Adrian Skeete (Barbados).
P W D L F A Pts
Trinidad and Tobago 2 2 0 0 8 1 6
Antigua & Barbuda 2 1 1 0 2 1 4
Dominican Republic 2 0 1 1 1 6 1
St Lucia 2 0 0 2 1 4 0
(Sun Oct 12)
Dominican Republic v St Lucia, 4 pm, Ato Boldon Stadium;
T&T v Antigua and Barbuda, 6.15 pm, Ato Boldon Stadium.
VIDEO: - T&T 2 vs ST LUCIA 0.
Guerra, Jones score as Warriors blank St Lucia 2-0.
T&T Guardian Reports.
With a spot in next month’s 18th Caribbean Football Union Cup eight-team finals secured in Montego Bay, Jamaica, T&T Soca Warriors will be aiming to finish as group winners when they meet Antigua & Barbuda in their final Group Seven semifinal round match at Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva from 6.15 pm this evening.
The Stephen Hart-coached Soca Warriors will enter the match needing only a draw to to top the four-team round-robin group after blanking St Lucia 2-0 on Friday for a second straight win after thumping Dominican Republic 6-1 in their opener on Wednesday at the same venue.
Antigua & Barbuda, meanwhile are second on the table with four points after it was held to 0-0 draw by Dominican Republic in Friday’s opening match and need a draw to be certain of qualification depending on the outcome of today’s opener between Dom Republic (one point) and winless St Lucia from 4 pm.
For Friday’s encounter, Hart made a few changes to his starting line-up with Wednesday’s hat-trick goalscorer Kevin Molino and fellow midfielders Hughtun Hector and Andre Boucaud as well as centre-back Carlyle Mitchell and goalkeeper Jan-Michael Williams all making way for Yohance Marshall, Kevan George, Alvin Jones, Cordell Cato and Marvin Phillip while England-born defender Justin Hoyte, again missed out due to passport problems.
However, it did not seem to offset the Soca Warriors as the locals watched by another disappointing crowd took the lead inside the first five minutes for a second match in a row. This time captain and forward Kenwyne Jones, who scored twice against Dominican Republic, utilised his aerial power to head down a pass into Guerra, who controlled at the edge of the area before curling a perfect right-footer into the far corner off the fingertips of goalkeeper Randy Poleon.
St Lucia, captained by 34-year-old former Caledonia AIA defender Sheldon Burton Emmanuel, responded with a neat string of passes in the 11th minute however T&T defender Joevin Jones made a timely stop as Magnum Valcin lined up a shot at Phillip at the edge of the six-yard area.
Six minutes later, speedy Seattle Sounders winger, Cordell Cato almost fired T&T into a 2-0 lead, after weaving his way past two tackles on the left and cutting inside, only to be denied by a diving Poleon, who parried the ball away for a corner. And Poleon was brilliant again three minutes from the break with a point blank to deny Cato after Kenwyne Jones, who lost his footing, failed to make initial contact to a low right side Lester Peltier cross in the middle of the area.
Following the break T&T failed to hit the target on two early tries and St Lucia responded with a miss of their own before the 50th minute with Felix flashing an effort across the face of goal from a tight angle. Joevin Jones, T&T’s Finland-based utility player had a go at goal in the 57th minute, but his effort went inches wide of Poleon’s far upright from the left of the area.
Then a minute later Kenwyne Jones miserable night continued as he headed wide of the St Lucia net from two metres out off a well-placed Peltier cross. St Lucia was then denied by T&T goalkeeper Phillip preserved the “Soca Warriors” who made a pointblank save to keep out Malik St. Prix. Soon after Jones redeemed himself from close range with a header off the underside of the cross-bar after Guerra’s effort, from inside the area was not cleared by the St Lucians.
The visitors then had another chance through in the 74th minute when Emmanuel pu Felix through on the right side of the 18-yard box, but he fired into the side netting. T&T continued to enjoy most off the ball and Guerra had two further efforts to add to his team’s tally but he too failed to find the target, first volleying high over after being put through on goal and then failing to get on the end of a precise right sided centre from substitute Daneil Cyrus'.
Looking ahead to the match today, the former Canada coach said, “Antigua & Barbuda are very organized. They have six or seven players who know what they are doing. We have also seen that they leave the best part of their game for the second period.”
Coach Hart invest in changes.
By Alvin Corneal (Guardian).
A coach’s job is never simple and those who believe that they have the answers to what appears as mistakes on the field, may well seek to find out reasons for their apprehensions. T&T won the contest 2-0.
The Warriors started with several changes against St Lucia, a factor which surely would have made a significant change to the quality of play.
We were aware of the minor injury to Molino, making his absence inevitable and obviously weakening the squad. It simply meant that the penetrative effect of the attacks on the flanks may be reduced or even eliminated and replaced by another of the coach’s visions for goal-scoring.
The absence of Daneil Cyrus and Carlyle Mitchell were in my opinion, a risk of some proportion. Cyrus, for his competence of winning the ball from the elite opposing players, and Mitchell, for his stability in the central defense.
The replacements Alvin Jones and Yohance Marshall are capable defenders from an individual standpoint. However, the back four clearly did not enjoy the sound organisational performance of the first match and it showed up in the vulnerability of their ability to shake off attacking moves when St. Lucia advance, some of whom looked quite capable of breaking through for goal chances.
Thankfully, the presence of Ataullah Guerra’s versatility supported by Khaleem Hyland’s multitasking of the deep lying midfield and going into attack when needed, allowed the Warriors to retain midfield possession.
Naturally, the path to St Lucia’s penalty area became somewhat difficult, as they sensibly blocked off the flank attacks by both Peltier and Cato, a move which was not dealt with by either player.
They felt that individual skill would have won their battle, despite reduction in space and player support for the opposing wing backs.
The opening goal scored by Guerra came from an accurate diagonal aerial pass from Hyland to Kenwyne Jones whose knocked down header to Guerra was clinically sound, and allowed the talented former Mucurapo Senior student to collect and neatly place his right footer into the net from fifteen metres.
St Lucia then knew that they could not afford to retrain the services of so many players who were given the job of blocking crossed balls. Their adjustment allowed better attacking options for them, but opened the spaces for over-lapping runs by Joevin jones on the left and his brother Alvin on the right.
Some created chances which were missed by Cato, Jones and and Lester Peltier, mainly through attempted shots from angles which needed absolute pinpoint accuracy and a bit of a keeper’s poor coverage. In the midst of these features, there must have been some satisfaction from the creativity of Guerra as the key attacking midfielder whose composure and ability to find penetrative lanes was a joy to watch.
His deceptive dribble in the opponent’s penalty area, followed by a powerful shot which Keeper Randy Poleon could only parry away, but onto the head of Jones to give the Cardiff city striker goal number two in the match and three for the tournament so far.
Overall, they appeared sometimes an unwarranted sign of individualism from the young players who clearly were trying to catch the attention of the fans, not realizing that it was indirectly affecting the chemistry of the game plan.
At this juncture, I must welcome the former national U-17, and U-20 captain Leston Paul to the team and his late entrance provided sufficient time to orchestrate the happening from midfield as smoothly as his musical namesake will have done in his studio.
St Lucia deserved some credit for their performance, mainly because they appeared to stick to a game plan diligently, especially in defense and midfield, which took some ball possession advantage at times.
The Warriors must continue their dominance in Caribbean soccer and Antigua/Barbuda must be made to understand and respect the progress by our lads. Let us hope that the final match will provide the best football of the tournament.