Thu, Jun

National coach Bertille St Clair is back in the country following a one-week visit to England where he met with technical consultant Graham Taylor and had discussions with some of this country’s overseas-based pros including English-born striker Bobby Zamora.
St Clair will resume duties with the senior team on Thursday morning at the Hasely Crawford Stadium after arriving here on Wednesday.

He also met with recently appointed assisted coach David Nakhid who stopped in London on his way back to Lebanon. Nakhid shared his views on his first week experience working with the “Soca Warriors” and also met with England coach Sven Erikksonn during his visit to the English FA.

“It was a hectic trip but it was very useful. I had meetings with Graham Taylor and we spoke at length about the national team and my plans for the next round of matches. We also looked at videos of some of the games we played earlier this year,” St Clair told TTFF Media on Tuesday night.

He also commended Nakhid on the way he carried out his first week of duties.

“He was on his way back to Lebanon and he gave me his views on the players he saw in Trinidad. I think that David will be a real asset to the technical staff and the national team. I was also able to visit several clubs including West Ham where I had a nice chat with Bobby Zamora who is eligible to play for Trinidad and Tobago,” St Clair added.

A highlight of the trip was a visit to the million-dollar Arsenal Training Complex just outside London where the coach met Arsene Wenger and several of the top Arsenal players. He also visited Manchester United. The T&T team had also trained at that Arsenal facility in February 2001 prior to the World Cup qualifier against Jamaica.

“The facilities at Arsenal are great and I had an opportunity to observe some of their training methods. Their players come in the morning and they spend the entire day at the ground. Everything is there for them including meals, physiotherapy and so on. I can also tell you that they train very hard.”

On his meeting with St Clair, Nakhid commented “I had a very good meeting with the coach in London and I am looking forward to working with him when I get back to Trinidad. We always got along very well and I have a lot of respect for him. When I was the captain of the team I was able to discuss things with him and while we did not agree on everything, he always gave me a fair hearing.”

And about his run in with Erikksonn, he added “Erikksonn came up to me and said that I looked familiar and when I told that I played for both Grasshoppers and Malmo FC he said that he remembered my face. We had a brief chat and it was good to still be recognized by such an outstanding coach”.