T&T forwards aim to get it right

Shaun Fuentes
Date Published: 
Trinidad Guardian

Danish coach Flemming Serritslev believes that once this country's under 23 strikers can brush up on their finishing touches on goal, they can defeat his team in the second of two friendly matches at the Concacaf Centre of Excellence, Macoya from 6 pm today.

Serritslev expressed this feeling after the Danes inflicted a 1-0 defeat on the local ladson Wednesday.

The Europeans move on to face Jamaica in their next outing and are hopeful for a good showing but are bracing themselves for a better performance from T&T who are coming off 7-0 and 1-0 defeats to Brazil and the visitors.

"My players were very exhausted coming down to the end of the match. But I am very sure the next game (Friday) will be very difficult for us. The win is a very good result for us because I think Trinidad has a very good team. The players are skilful and fast and there is no doubt that they had more possession than we did. But perhaps we had more chances to score.

"The Trinidad and Tobago team is lacking proper goal-shooting. They had a lot of looks at our goal but they were not hitting the shots. And when they did they either went high or wide . If they can improve on their shooting, I am sure they will be a very difficult team to beat" said Serritslev.

Local coach Bertille St Clair will be at the helm of today's team again after missing Wednesday's match. He and the man in charge last match Jamaal Shabaaz, will be hoping that the return of strikers Hector Sam and Nigel Pierre add some stability to the T&T forward line.

After falling behind to Daniel Jensen's 2nd minute header on Wednesday, the local side struggled to mount any worthwhile attacks on goal before the half-time break.

The use of three over aged players in striker Gary Glasgow, Lyndon Andrews and Stokely Mason hardly helped their chances. Defence Force striker Jason Scotland could have done better with a couple second half chances.

Finnish based defender Brent Sancho was solid for the locals but guilty of slipping too often and was lucky to escape on each occasion. Shabaaz pushed regular defender Keyeno Thomas into the midfield and introduced regular under 23 members Adrian Narine and Joseph Peters after the break.

Almost immediately there was a different approach. The Danes defence was pressured in latter half of the second period. Peters saw his left foot effort drift wide of the mark in the 75th minute. Six minutes later, Carlos Edwards' right side cross whistled across the six yard box before Peters met the partial clearance to force goalkeeper Jacob Kragh to save to his right.

Afterwards Shabaaz said that the reason for having the guest players was because of the little knowledge of the visitors. "After travelling such long distance, the least we owed them was a decent match."

He felt the local players deserved credit for a their efforts but added that there's still much work to be done before T&T go into the semi final round of the 2000 Sydney Olympic qualifying round here in March against Canada, Netherlands Antilles and Guatemala.

"We played with an appreciative level of intensity but Sydney is a very, very long away from T&T" said Shabaaz.