“To be losing finalist in a second Final is very disappointing, but I don’t think it’s a disgrace losing 5-4 on penalties,” T&TEC FC head coach Dexter Cyrus told media following last Friday’s disappointing 5-4 penalty loss against W Connection in the Final of the 2011-12 Toyota Classic.
Cyrus who also guided the “Electric Boys” to the Final of the First Citizens Cup in October where his team lost 2-1 against Caledonia, held Connection to a goalless draw to send the decision on kicks from the penalty spot at the Mannie Ramjohn Stadium.
Jamal Ayres, T&TEC’s third kicker, was denied by goalkeeper Jan Michael Williams while Connection converted all five kicks.
“The fact that we have lost a second Final could be a big blow for the team,” continued Cyrus, a former Trinidad and Tobago international.
“The players might tend to take it on, not really realizing the situation because as a team we are not experienced as other teams. We might have experienced players but we are not as experienced as a team.
It took Manchester City almost seven to eight years to become experienced as a team. They had players in and players out. Now it’s a situation where (our) young players might start to doubt themselves because of the fact that they have lost two Finals.
We need to keep their confidence high and make them understand that there is a lot going for them and we have the highest of confidence in them.”
However the T&TEC coach remains positive adding, “I know that we have already created history by reaching two Finals in our first season at the TT Pro League and we are at the top of the League.
So there are a lot of positives in the situation that we can take right now although it always hurts to lose a Final.
T&TEC currently leads the Digicel Pro League standings with 13 points at the top, following by Adam’s Construction San Juan Jabloteh and W Connection in second and third positions respectfully with 9 points but separated by goals difference.
T&TEC will host DIRECTV North East Stars from 6pm at the Mannie Ramjohn Stadium in Round Two Match Day Two and Cyrus pleads with the “Electric Boys” supporters to be patient.
“The fans need to see us win. That’s what they understand. So at the end of the day they are definitely going to be disappointed. But all in all they have to be patient. We are new to this level of football and they guys are not accustomed to being in Finals in the TT Pro League. It’s a first First Citizens Cup Final, it’s a first Toyota Classic Final, so I think the fans need to be patient,” he said.
W Connection head coach Stuart Charles Fevrier applauded T&TEC, also highlighting the fact some of their players came from his team.
“You can see T&TEC has demonstrated this year they are one of the top teams in the League and I believe it’s because some of the players that came from us,” said the W Connection coach.
They have very good players with professional experience and that augers well for T&TEC.
I just want to encourage them. They are a good bunch and have a lot of depth in their team which is very good.”
Commenting on the Final, Fevrier said, “I like the game. It was a very tactical game and the game with the least amount of mistakes would have come out on top. However I thought we had the better of exchanges. T&TEC were very dangerous more on dead-ball situations. They never really troubled us on open play. We had about three good situations where we could have at least scored on goal but unfortunately it didn’t happen and it took us to the penalty spot to get the victory.”