Former national football captain Dwight Yorke voiced his support towards the national women’s team prior to their December 2 final World Cup qualifier against Ecuador. A victory, he said, would have propelled the women’s game but with the result now history, Yorke has another message for Maylee Attin-Johnson and her teammates.

Yorke was a teenager on November 19, 1989 when T&T suffered a 1-0 loss to the United States, a defeat that saw the Strike Squad falter at the final hurdle. Shattering as it was, T&T continued to chase that qualification dream and eventually accomplished it in 2005/2006.

“It’s heartbreaking and it’s something that never leaves you,” Yorke said. “This is a memory you will take with you for the rest of your lives but it makes you a stronger person and you take the lessons from it. I had the same experience as a youngster in 1989 but I didn’t let it keep me down. Instead I used it to my advantage and I pushed myself to do better, to chase more dreams and to achieve things.

“This is what these young women have to do now. They’ve set a good platform for women’s football and now they have got to believe more than ever before that they can go on to achieve other things. There will be more tournaments and more World Cups to come.

Hopefully now the people and I mean the association, the stakeholders, the Government and the players can realise how important it is to give it their all both for the women and the men’s football back home.”