Soca Warriors must improve, says Warner
By Kern De Freitas www.trinidadexpress.com
Change is coming soon to the "Soca Warriors" camp. Soca Warriors must improve, says Warner.
Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation (TTFF) special adviser Jack Warner has indicated that some adjustments will be made to the national team's set-up because of their current poor form.
T&T, under coach Russell Latapy, are preparing for the Digicel Caribbean Cup at the end of next month and have not won their last three practice matches. The senior T&T footballers were beaten 3-1 at home by Jamaica, humbled 3-0 away to Panama, and held 0-0 by underdogs Belize.
"It is no secret our men's senior team has not been performing well," Warner said yesterday during the opening ceremony of a five-day coaching clinic, hosted by the TTFF at the Centre of Excellence in Macoya, to be headed by Dutch football legend Ruud Gullit.
"Our journey to the 2014 World Cup cannot continue along this path," Warner added. "There must be changes. The (TTFF) president and its executive understand the need and the urgency to reverse the team's fortunes."
T&T are currently in Antigua/Barbuda to face the home team in a friendly international this afternoon. On that short tour, they will also engage St Lucia.
Another national team, though, the T&T Under-17 women and their coach Even Pellerud, were praised for their efforts during the FIFA Under-17 Women's World Cup, hosted by Trinidad and Tobago, which ends on Saturday.
Warner lauded the T&T women's football technical director for his guidance and commitment to the players and the TTFF's development initiatives.
"Thank you for putting Trinidad and Tobago on the map of women's football," Warner said. "We faced international teams, giants, yet we can stand proud today. One year ago, I would not have imagined this could even be possible.
"I can only imagine, coach, if you had six months more to prepare these girls what could have been the outcome today. We have great plans for you and for women's football in this country."
Warner, also the Minister of Works and Transport, hopes the TTFF can utilise the momentum generated by the young Soca Princesses' World Cup campaign.
"This team united a nation. It gave us hope. The passion, the drive and the skill displayed by these players are testament to Even's abilities. Coaching is the foundation of any good player; a good coach can transform an average player into a phenomenal footballer."
The coaching clinic will feature a number of exercises on and off the pitch, as well as an extensive analytical workshop to review matches from the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa.
Twenty-four coaches from T&T will also participate in a number of advanced coaching clinics involving match analysis and match-related training, conducted by members of the Dutch Football Federation.