North East Stars head coach Angus Eve is bracing for a backlash on the heels of his team’s 3-1 win over Caledonia AIA last Friday.
Second half goals by Cornell Glen, Kerry Baptiste and substitute Kaydion Gabriel handed the Sangre Grande club full points at the Hasely Crawford Stadium against Caledonia to enjoy pole position on the 2012-2013 Digicel Pro League standings after round one.
“It’s always good to win,” said Eve following his head coach debut in the TT Pro League. “…but we are not naive to know that it’s just the first game and it takes 21 games to win the League.”
The former San Juan Jabloteh and Ma Pau SC assistant coach added, “We just chalked it up to having a good start.”
However it wasn’t just a win or a good start. It was a win against the winner of last season’s First Citizens Cup, FA Trophy, Lucozade Sport Goal Shield and Caribbean Football Union (CFU) Club Championship, Caledonia AIA who currently participates in the CONCACAF Champions’ League group stage.
Eve continued, “It’s a good feeling. Jamaal Shabazz is someone I look up too and all that he has been doing at Caledonia over the years. And also what they have achieved last season and now playing in the CONCACAF Champions’ League.
It added a bit of gloss [to the victory] knowing that Caledonia have already played a few games this season and we were in our first.”
But on the flipside, the former Trinidad and Tobago international and Olympic Team coach, said, “We just set a trap for ourselves because other teams will now be coming differently at us.”
Internally, Eve said it’s his job to keep the North East Stars players’ feet on the ground and not become self absorbed by Friday’s Round One Match Day One win. The North East Stars coach went further saying, “The good thing is that I have a big squad, so if anyone becomes complacent, I’d have someone to do the job.”
Eve’s handcrafted squad includes goalkeepers Cleon John and Adrian Foncette, Seon Power, Glenton Wolfe, Jayson Joseph, Kevon Villarael, Jeromie Williams, Kennedy Hinkson, Elijah Manners, Baptiste, Gabriel, Kareem Moses, Devon Jamerson, Glen, Jean-Luc Rochford among others.
This weekend North East Stars, second positioned Police FC, third positioned Defence Force, W Connection, Central FC, St. Ann’s Rangers, T&TEC FC and Caledonia will turn all eyes on the First Citizens Cup quarter-final round which will be drawn on Wednesday.
The knockout tournament will run for three weeks with the quarter-final round on September 21, the semi-final round on Friday 28 September and the Final on Friday 5 October.