Caledonia AIA Technical Director Jamaal Shabazz was on Tuesday officially announced as joint head coach for the Trinidad and Tobago Senior Men’s Team that will contest the 2012 Caribbean Cup Finals next month in Antigua/Barbuda.
This was agreed upon following discussions between TTFF President Raymond Tim Kee and Technical Director Anton Corneal. Shabazz was involved in his first meeting with the rest of the Senior Team staff on Monday evening along with Tim Kee and Corneal.
Derek King remains as assistant coach to Co-head coaches Hutson Charles and Shabazz. The rest of the staff remains the same.
The decision was also announced during Tim Kee’s first meeting with members of the TTFF Executive Committee at the Federation headquarters in Woodbrook on Tuesday evening.
Tim Kee also stated that this move will remain until there is need for further review of the technical staff in relation to the team's progress in 2013 and beyond.
Shabazz will make his first appearance at the team’s training session on Thursday from 9am at the Larry Gomes Stadium.
Charles who has guided T&T to six games unbeaten in the Caribbean Cup qualifiers, welcomed Shabazz’s addition to his staff.
“It’s something that I welcome. As I've said before, I am in this for the national interest and if there's anything that can help the team go forward then I will support it.
Jamaal has had a fair amount of success in the Pro League and he has coached at the national level before. We also know of his success with Guyana. I think this is a good move towards seeing the improvement of the national team,” Charles told TTFF Media.
Shabazz himself was excited over his new role. He served as assistant coach back in 2003 under Stuart Charles Fevrier and was on the technical staff for friendlies against such teams as Morocco, South Africa, Venezuela, Haiti and Kenya.
“It’s a massive opportunity for me and an honour to be recalled to serve at the highest level which is the National Men’s Senior Team. I’ve been here before but I thought there was a lot more contribution to be made and I’m very pleased to be handed the opportunity.
I’m truly excited to work with this current team as we attempt to reclaim the glory and dominance in the Caribbean and continue our aspirations to be among the best in CONCACAF. I've also observed with great interest the progress this team has made with limited resources and it means that the staff has been doing quite a good job at the same time,” Shabazz stated.
Tim Kee revealed that in his discussions with Corneal, there was a short-list of coaches based in T&T and a decision was taken to appoint Shabazz.
“We held our discussions and there were a couple more names that were mentioned and discussed very closely. At this time we felt Shabazz was the right man for the role.
He has acquired significant international experience over the past year or so and he has been involved heavily on the local stage. His success at Caledonia AIA has not gone unnoticed. This is partnership that we are definitely looking forward to as we continue our climb to higher heights in the confederation,” said Tim Kee.
Shabazz, who holds a UEFA ‘B’ License, also earned his FIFA coaching instructor’s license and has been one of the TTFF’s instructors for its coaching license programs in conjunction with the Dutch Royal Academy.