Trinidad and Tobago Women’s Senior team forward Mariah Shade says the hosts will need to possess a desire for victory and prove it on the field of play when they begin their Caribbean Football Union Women’s Challenge Series against Suriname at the Ato Boldon Stadium from 6:30pm on Wednesday.
Shade and her teammates will undergo a final rehearsal at the TTFA Home of Football venue in Couva on Tuesday evening before opening their account against the Dutch-speaking nation in the second game of a double header which will see Grenada and Guyana squaring off from 4pm.
T&T are preparing for the start of their CONCACAF Caribbean 2019 World Cup qualifiers which will also be staged here in May. And Shade wants to see the team developing a winning habit beginning from this series.
“I think we need to come out with more energy and determination to win,” she told TTFA Media on Monday.
“Every game is important but we know as we continue our preparations how important these games are. Personally I except nothing but victories and I know the team does also. No excuses! We know we need to get the job done. It’s about time we start getting some wins,” Shade added.
Regarding the team’s preparations under head coach Jamaal Shabazz, the former France-based player said emphasis was also being placed on the team’s defensive shape.
“Training has been very much focused on our defensive work and responsibilities so we’ve been working a lot on that. We have also been working on movement in the attack and penetration along with being comfortable with the ball. These games will be good practice for us to see how well we can implement what we have been working on,” Shade said.
The Caribbean teams are no longer push overs and Shade hinted that her team has no intentions of letting up against any of the upcoming opponents.
“We know that the teams in the Caribbean are no walk over anymore so we cannot take anyone for granted. Many teams are stepping up and becoming more difficult to defeat but it’s again a good opportunity for us to just go out there and execute the game plan and show that we, Trinidad and Tobago are still the giants of Caribbean in Women’s Football and then look to take that dominance into the CONCACAF Level,” Shade said.
This is the third women’s competition organized by the CFU, after the 2000 CFU Women’s Caribbean Cup and the 2014 CFU Women’s Caribbean Cup.The last competition was the 2014 Caribbean Women’s Cup, which was won by Trinidad and Tobago. Haiti won the inaugural competition in 2000.
It is being played across five venues, and serves as preparation for the CONCACAF Championship and World Cup qualifiers starting in May. Unlike the two previous CFU Women’s Caribbean Cup tournaments, there is no final round and thus no overall champion.