Huddersfield dominated the early stages of
the match and took the lead through Jamie
Vincent. Vale equalised when Tony Naylor netted with a fierce shot.
Kenny Irons then gave Huddersfield a 2-1 lead from the penalty spot.
Rougier came close to tying the scores in the
second half when he directed an effort
wide from close up.
Before yesterday's affair, second to last Vale
(36 points) needed victories in their final
three matches against Huddersfield, Nottingham Forest and Wolverhampton Wolves to
maintain their six year stay in the First Division.
Rougier said earlier this season that there
were a couple clubs showing interest in him
but time will tell whether he leaves Vale next season.
The Pro Look
by Shaun Fuentes
Yorke salutes United faithfuls
TRINIDAD and Tobago striker Dwight Yorke may
not match the 29 goals he scored
last season but admits that Manchester United's widespread talent and superb support
inspired him to his current 22 goal tally.
Yorke reached the 50 goal mark for United with
a double in Monday's 3-2 victory
Yorke added his second, and what turned out
to be the winner, from close range in the
68th minute to put United 16 points clear at the summit.
"It's been a brilliant season for us and to
get a result in front of our home fans and show
the quality of the team - we're all delighted about it. The fans always play a great part.
In the years I've been here they've been fantastic and they showed their quality again
today and it's just great to be a part of it.
"It was always going to be difficult coming
off a season like last season but if someone
said we were going to win the League again - we certainly would have taken it.
"This is one of the trophies we always set
out to win - we know where are priorities lie.
To win the League again is tremendous and all credit to the players," Yorke said on
Noted for his partnership with Andy Cole, Yorke
also credited the work of winger
David Beckham, skipper Roy Keane and Paul Scholes for all playing a part in raising
United's game when things weren't quite going their way.
"Me and Coley got 50 goals last season and
we're not far off that again this time. But
it's pleasing to know that if me or Andy don't score, there's always Becks or Giggsy or
Keano who can score.
Then there's Paul Scholes. We've shown all
this season that our team spirit is very
good, and that's why things have gone so well for us this season. When the chips are
down, we come up with something," Yorke said.
United lost the chance to repeat their European
Champions' League success of last
season when they lost 3-2 to Spain's Real Madrid 3-2 recently and Yorke added that
there will always be another team capable of troubling the "Red Devils."
United boss Alex Ferguson boasted that the
present side is the best off all time and
they will have the chance to cop a prestigious "World Team of the year" award.
Their treble-winning exploits have earned them
a nomination in the inaugural Laureus
Sports Awards - sport's answer to the Oscars, later this year. They face stiff
competition from the Australian rugby union team which lifted the World Cup in Wales
last November and the United States women's soccer side.
The 28-year-old Yorke is expected to line up
for T&T against Haiti in a World Cup
qualifying match on May 6 at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.
Latapy looks to 2001
RUSSELL LATAPY believes Hibernian can pick
themselves up after coming so close
to reaching the Scottish Cup final and go a step further next season.
With Hibs now in sixth spot and a place in
the UEFA Cup next season out of their
reach, Latapy feels their showing has been creditable and now the focus should be on
"Those are the competitions you want to play
in and these are the stadiums you want to
play at in these kind of games.So I'm certain that the players will be
definitely up for it next season.We've done well, we'll continue to plug away and do the
things that we've been taught by Alex McLeish - to play attacking football and get the
results," Latapy said recently.
Reports out of Scotland stated that Hibs will
allow Latapy to play in both World Cup
qualifying legs against Haiti next month.
The "Little Magician" has travelled constantly
to represent T&T since the Gold Cup in
February and said that it has been tiring at times.
It's hard doing all the travelling but in four
or five days normally I recover so I was
pretty up for it. "But it's difficult if you do a lot of travelling then eventually you're going
A call for Stern rest
NOTTINGHAM Evening Leader newspaper has made
a call for striker Stern John to
take a rest from playing in the English First Division order to return to his best form in
time for the start of next season.
The 23-year-old Nottingham Forest player recently
recovered from a posterior
cruciate ligament injury which kept him out of action for about three months.
He had been told by doctors that it would take
five months before he next wore a
Forest shirt on the field.
His latest appearance for 17th place Forest
in a 1-1 draw with Sheffield United left
fans pleased with his progress as he added life to the club's attack. John shot home in
the 85th minute but the goal was ruled offside andthe referee later admitted the decision
Evening Leader football analyst Ian Collier
doesn't feel John should be playing now.
"Since his return to the Forest side after
injury, it is evident that he has lost a great deal
of pace,something that will return given a proper period of recuperation.
So maybe David Platt can afford to rest his
'star' striker who must be not only unfit -
but struggling to get through a confidence crisis. Sometimes it works for footballers to
play through times like this. But in John's case it could affect him more long term. The
most important thing for Platt and Forest now is next season, when they have to get
promotion. Anything less than a Premier League place would be deemed a failure.
T&T are hoping to have John for the upcoming
World Cup qualifying match against
Haiti. He last represented the country in a 3-2 loss to Honduras last year.
Eve could be out
ANGUS EVE could be on his way out of Chester
City if they get demoted from the
English Third Division.
Currently they are last on the standings with
36 points, one behind Shrewsbury, Carlisle
(38 points) and Exeter (41 points).
Eve had been eyed by Second Division's Wrexham last month but they were not
prepared to meet the transfer fee asked for by City.
The 28-year-old Eve was recently featured in
the Wrexham Evening Leader in which
he said that he was honoured to have made progress in football in the cricket-mad
"My dad played football and his father before
him. It runs through the family. I have a
son who is seven and everybody says that he is looking a very promising player.
"In Trinidad the people follow both cricket
and football but they tend to follow the
game that is doing the best. If Brian Lara is doing well they follow the cricket and if we
are doing well, as we are at the moment, then football is the game.
The former Army Joe Public captain has been
a regular member of the T&T senior
squad in recent years also skippering the side on occasions.
He has netted three goals in just as many matches
in the World Cup qualifying
campaign so far.
Crewe wants new system
CREWE Alexandra manager Dario Gradi could go
against signing foreign players,
particularly those from the Caribbean if FIFA doesn't put a system in place to prevent
club versus country rows.
Gradi was referring to the regular absence
of local goalkeeper Clayton Ince and
Vincentian striker Rodney Jack after both have been representing their countries in
World Cup qualifying competition recently.
Ince has not been able to play much games for
the Crewe first team this season and
missed T&T's recent 1-0 win over the Dominican Republic but Gradi still feels he
should not be out of camp as he often as he has.
"I wouldn't sign them unless the system is
sorted out better as we're the ones who end
up paying the wages of people who are not here often enough. Clayton has made a
stance in choosing not to go to play in Trinidad's recent game. And that's the only
strength the clubs have if the players themselves make a stand," Gradi told the Sentinel
TRINIDAD and Tobago's senior footballers have
been invited to take part in a historic
four- nation tournament at Wembley Stadium in England in July.
This country will join Caribbean rivals Jamaica,
and African giants Nigeria and
Cameroon in the first-ever African-Caribbean tournament to be staged anywhere when
the Unity Cup will be up for grabs.
T&T Football Federation president Oliver
Camps said an invitation was received from
competition organisers Optima Sports and the Soca Warriors will take up the offer as
the matches come during a break from their 2002 World Cup qualifying campaign.
Camps said he was first told about the tournament
when he met with an official of the
organising committee during his visit to Zurich, Switzerland earlier this month.
Coach Ian Porterfield's team is billed to face Jamaica in the second game of a
double-header at Wembley on July 12.
African Nation's champions Cameroon square
off with Nigeria in the earlier match.
The two winners meet in the final at Wembley July 15 following a third place play-off.
The New Nation newspaper in England highlighted the presence of several well known
players including T&T's Manchester United striker Dwight Yorke, West Ham
goalkeeper Shaka Hislop, and Nigerian Nwankwo Kanu, Celestine Babayaro and
Marc Vivien Foe.
Organiser Rotimi Pedro of Optima Sports said
£500,000 was the total expense for the
action which will be screened worldwide.
"The English FA have approved the tournament
and the FAs of all the countries
competing - except Jamaica - have confirmed their involvement.
"I see this as the best way of raising the profile of the African-Caribbean game to a
"There are many fans from African and Caribbean
back-grounds in Europe but few of
them are even found at a game involving their local club sides, but would relish the
chance to see a match involving their compatriots," said Pedro.
Camps was equally excited saying, "We are more
than happy about this. We have
played in England before but as far as I can recall it will be our first game at Wembley."
Once T&T get past Haiti in their next World Cup tie next month, another warm-up
match against Canada in Toronto is scheduled for May 27.
Camps said that already Russell Latapy and
Angus Eve had confirmed their presence
for the Haiti clash.
"We need all our players. We haven't heard
from Manchester about Dwight Yorke's
availability. But this time we are not waiting for a reply, we will be taking him," said
Stern on way back
John, sidelined with a posterior cruciate ligament
injury for the first three months of the
year, seemed to be getting back to his normal form which was evident in a 1-1 draw
with Sheffield United.
John replaced Dougie Freeman in the second
half and immediately he put life into the
With five minutes remaining John shot past
United goalkeeper only to see his strike
Moments later the 23-year-old forward had Tracey
at full stretch to deny his header
from a Ricardo Scimeca right side cross.
Chris Bart Williams squandered a good chance
to put Forest ahead earlier when he
missed a penalty.
Forest remained in 17th spot on the 24-team
T&T England-born defender Ian Cox scored a sixth minute header to guide Burnley to
an exciting 4-3 win over Milwall in the Second Division.
Cox's team are now in fourth spot on the standings.
T&T captain Anthony Rougier and Port Vale battled to a 0-0 draw with Norwich to lie
second from last with 36 points.
In Scotland, midfielder Russell Latapy didn't
have luck on his side as he struck the post
in Hibernian's 1-1 draw with Celtic.
"Latas" caused panic in the Celtic defence
after just four minutes when his fierce effort
rebounded off the woodwork.
Holding Celtic to the draw meant that Rangers
were crowned Premier League
champions without kicking a ball. Second place Celtic needed victory to keep their
Hibs meanwhile, dropped a spot to sixth with 38 points. Latapy has been cleared to represent T&T against Haiti.
TRINIDAD and Tobago coach Ian Porterfield is
certain to have the services of
Hibernian midfielder Russell Latapy for this country's 2002 World Cup qualifying tie
against Haiti next month.
Word out of Scotland yesterday is that Hibs
manager Alex McLeish is prepared to
face his club's remaining three matches without the "Little Magician", allowing him to
play both games for T&T.
T&T face Haiti on May 6 at Hasely Crawford
Stadium, Mucurapo, with the return leg
scheduled for Port-au-Prince on May 21.
"Latas", who was excused from one of the two
legs in previous ties, will most likely
miss games against current Scottish league leaders Rangers (May 3), Motherwell (May
6), and Hibs' final game for the season against Hearts on May 20.
It is understood that Porterfield is also hoping
to have Manchester United striker
Dwight Yorke, captain Anthony Rougier (Port Vale), Avery John (Bohemians FC),
Ansil Elcock (Columbus Crew), Stern John (Nottingham Forest), Angus Eve (Chester
City), Marvin Andrews (Raith Rovers) , goalkeeper Clayton Ince (Crewe Alexandra)
and Brent Sancho (Charleston Battery).
Other than getting T&T to play as he would
like, Porterfield admitted that getting all
players available was his next worry.
"All the players have been very serious and
have given 100 per cent in their work. All
the foreign players have been with the team with the exception of Dwight Yorke who
had some important matches with his club," Porterfield said here.
The former coach of Zambia told the Soccernet
internet website in England he is more
than willing to develop a good relationship with Yorke and the other overseas players
after there was talk that some were considering retiring from the international game
following Bertille St Clair's sacking.
"I am more than happy to speak to the players,
Dwight included, to find out what their
plans are. I would think they will still be willing to play for their country, unless there is
something serious which I don't know about. My biggest problem will be getting all of
our players together long enough to give us a chance to qualify for the World Cup
"Also, when the guys from Europe come over,
they don't want to be locked up in a
concentration camp for four days. I know they'll have to be given freedom to see their
friends and family - hopefully a flexible approach will encourage people to want to play
for their country.
"If we need them, though, I expect them to
turn out for their country and I don't doubt
they will. Getting to the World Cup Finals would be magnificent for Trinidad and
It would also be my ultimate achievement after
coming so close with Zambia. If I did
that, then maybe I can go back to the UK and say I've not done too badly," said
Porterfield, who has brought on Englishman John Stubbs to monitor T&T's
THE Football Company of Trinidad and Tobago
(FCoTT) is seeking a commercial
trade-off with its current suppliers in their latest effort to inject big money into national
At present, FCoTT fork out an average of $335,500
for each World Cup qualifying
match played at home for services including accommodation, transport, catering,
ticketing, security and advertising. This money is generally paid to the same suppliers
such as Holiday Inn, Carib, SWAT and the Centre of Excellence.
FCoTT's proposal is that these companies give
back by supporting its ongoing
Perimeter Board Programme. As such all of FCoTT's present corporate partners will
be offered billboards for Trinidad and Tobago's next World Cup qualifying match
against Haiti on May 7.
"Association with football is probably one
of the more satisfactory ways of promoting
one's self and one's products," said Rawle Jeffreys, FCoTT Chief Executive Officer.
"And it is internationally so. We feel that anyone with a vested interest-the persons who
expect business out of the event-should offer some reciprocity by buying a field board
which would help us to generate revenue."
The cost of placing a billboard at the Hasely
Crawford Stadium on May 7 is $3,150.
This figure represents less than two per cent of the sum paid to Holiday Inn by FCoTT
for accommodation on a match by match basis.
It is the second such overture by FCoTT-headed
by Jeffreys and Marketing Officer
Sherlan Cabralis-to its corporate partners over the past month.
In a breakfast meeting on March 21, Fifa vice-president
Jack Warner invited the 50
contractors short-listed for the $380 million 2001 World Cup stadia project to
contribute 2.5 per cent of their profits to the national under-17 football squad.
Although three unnamed contractors immediately
took up the challenge, others have
been more hesitant with some openly resisting any effort to have this kickback written
into their contracts.
Other recent FCoTT initiatives include an advance
ticket purchasing programme, a
ticket sponsorship programme and a sweepstake and halftime give-away show.
FCoTT successfully launched its ticket sponsorship
programme during the Under-17
World Championship Preview which afforded 1,750 students the opportunity to see
Team 2001 host England, Mexico and the United States in a round-robin tournament.
Three thousand seats have already been reserved
for students-between the ages of
three and 18 years-at Trinidad and Tobago's World Cup qualifying matches as well.
These tickets were paid for by several corporate
godfathers including Carib Brewery,
Doc's Engineering, Republic Bank, First Citizens Bank, Holiday Inn, W.Connection,
Joe Public and 12 of the World Cup stadia contractors.
Texaco, L.John Williams, Weetabix and FCB have
already joined the Team 2001
The national senior team requires an estimated
$25 million to fund its progress to the
2002 World Cup co-hosted by Japan and South Korea while Team 2001 has a
projected budget of $9 million.
In addition, FCoTT is entrusted with the responsibility
to raise funds for the national
women's team and the under-20 squad who will participate in the Concacaf Women's
Gold Cup and the Concacaf World Youth Cup qualifying series respectively.
Crunch time coming for Porterfield
TRINIDAD and Tobago's new coach, Ian Porterfield
seems to be ecstatic after the
last of four victories the team has recorded since his appointment.
These victories have been against Netherlands
Antilles and Dominican Republic, both
at home and away, the latest being against Dominican Republic by a 1-0 margin in
From all reports, conditions in Santo Domingo
were certainly not up to par. A 1-0
victory should not inspire too much confidence in the T&T camp.
The coach has been quoted as saying that "not
as many chances as the first game at the
Oval were created in this last game". This only reinforces the point I made in my last
article that without Russell Latapy in midfield, not very much will be created from
midfield for the strikers up front.
Haiti is the next step for T&T. Porterfield
is waiting to have all his pros on board and
these include Dwight Yorke, Stern John and Russell Latapy, who did not play in the
What has happened to the former skipper, Anthony
Rougier? Is he unavailable or has
he been sidelined like Ansil Elcock?
Porterfield was given the job to coach the
national team with very little qualification but,
he has a 100 per cent success so far.
I guess this is what the T&TFF and most
of the supporters are interested in. I would
prefer not to comment too much on the team's performances under Porterfield as he
has only been in charge for about two months and the opposition has not been very
strong. Shortly, however, crunch time will come and everyone will be able to make a
Haiti was one of the top teams in the Concacaf
Zone up to a few years ago, sporting
players like Guy St Vil and Philip Vorbe. They actually qualified for the World in 1974,
when they beat T&T in Haiti after some strange decisions from the referee. But T&T
defeated the Haitians badly in the last Copa Caribe, and hopefully this T&T team
should again have their measure.
Haiti has secured something like twenty goals
so far and this could be a factor,
especially against a defence like T&T's which has caused many problems in the past.
Porterfield has said that he has been working
on the defence in his sessions and he is
satisfied with the progress they have made within recent times.
The former coach Bertille St Clair was blamed
when T&T lost to Canada in the Gold
Cup. And while I agree that some of it was justified, there were others who must share
in the loss.
The weakness in defence, as I have mentioned
several times in the past, has been the
main reason for the setback. We have been making the same basic mistakes all the
time, bad marking and covering and wasting the ball when in possession.
St Clair was made the scape goat. It was said
by the President of T&TFF, Oliver
Camps that he was given an ultimatum... win the Gold Cup or else.
I have no doubt that this was not the reason.
It had more to do with the fact that
Porterfield was brought down here in the first place for the job and not to coach Joe
The T&TFF officials were obviously looking
an opportunity to get rid of St Clair. And
when the team having lost the semifinal against Canada, they thought they had found a
plausible reason for firing him. I hold no brief for St Clair. I have criticised some of his
tactics, selections and substitutions time and time again. But the abrupt manner of his
dismissal, left a lot to be desired.
How could a coach of a T&T team be given
an ultimatum ...that if the team did not win
the Gold Cup, he would be fired?
This had to be the joke of the year. No local
team ever crossed the first round of this
tournament, although the format was much different previously. He must have been
fired for reaching too far I suppose.
It must have been humiliating and embarrassing
both to Edgar Vidale, who was given
the nasty job of passing on the news as well as to St Clair himself when he received the
Sedley Joseph is a former national captain
who remains a frequent commentator on the
game on radio and television.
TRINIDAD and Tobago midfielder Russell Latapy
was backing countryman Dwight
Yorke and Manchester United to go all the way in the European Champions' League.
However, Yorke's team, winners last year, bowed to Real Madrid 3-2 in the quarter
finals at Old Trafford yesterday.
Speaking in Scotland earlier this week, Latapy
said he is certain that Yorke will not let
any form disappointment get the better of him.
"He has shown how to deal with problems when
they come up. In football, things aren't
always going to go your way. You just have to decide whether to take it on the chin
and get up, or take it on the chin and stay down. Dwight isn't going to lie down,"
He added Yorke was part of a new generation of T&T players.
"One is the group of domestic boys who like
to do the nice things, very Brazilian, while
remaining willing to learn.
"The other is the professional players - we
understand how to win. Dwight is at the top
of that group. He is a personality who can teach the rest of the guys a lot, maybe even
more so this season than last," said the "Little Magician."
"Part of our problem in Trinidad is that we
have suffered a lot of disappointments in
football. Players have grown up hearing parents and grandparents telling them: "You
can get to a certain level but then this is what's going to happen."
"After a while, people stop believing that
they can achieve something. There is also a
stereotype which people here have of Caribbean players being maybe a bit lazy. But
Dwight is part of a new generation of players who have a different mentality.
He is the most confident man in the world.
In the Gold Cup, which was very tough for
us, he could have been the top scorer even though he played in only two games. He
maybe should have had seven goals when he got just the one.
"But he knew he was doing the right things.
And when he started scoring again it was
because he was still doing those things."
Hibs are currently fifth in the Scottish Premier
League standings and after leading them
to some exciting victories this season, Latapy will be keen to duplicate his form in
With United now out of the Champions' League,
Yorke is likely to make himself
available for T&T in their next World Cup qualifying match against Haiti here on May
Wednesday April 19th, 2000
THE PRO LOOK By SHAUN FUENTES
MANCHESTER United striker Dwight Yorke is set
to star in a video documentary
about life at Manchester United which is scheduled to be released in October.
Word out of England is that Yorke and his United
teammates have been working with
Icon Productions, a film company owned by movie star Mel Gibson.
Filming began earlier this season, and the
cameras followed Yorke and the "Red
Devils" to Tokyo where they captured the Toyota club championships and also to
Brazil when they took part in the World Club championships in January.
Icon has given the film the working title of
'Manchester United: The Movie' - but fans
will have the chance to choose the final name in a competition being run on the club's
The picture is being directed by American Bob
Potter who has worked on similar films
about Tennis stars Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi and basketballer Shaq O'Neil.
The 28-year-old Yorke recently did a commercial with Pepsi and has featured on
ESPN and several other magazine advertisements.
Yorke, who has 19 goals this season is expected
to line up for T&T in their next World
Cup qualifying match against Haiti on May 6, but before that he will hope to add to his
tally when United take on Real Madrid in European Champions' League action today
at Old Trafford.
With their superior goal difference, United
effectively need 80 points to be Premier
League champions which is the maximum number of points that second place Liverpool
(65 points) can reach in their last five games.
Latapy's got nothing to feel shame about
MIDFIELDER Russell Latapy was obviously disappointed
that Hibernian were
knocked out of the Scottish Cup when they went under 2-1 to Aberdeen in the
semi-final two weeks ago and then followed up with a 3-3 draw with St Johnstone last
That draw wasn't the result Hibs were looking
for as they go after a spot in European
competition next season.
However, Latapy who netted his 13th goal of
the season is keeping a smile about his
"Off course, we are disappointed but we have
had a good season. Being fifth in the
league and getting to the semi-final of the Cup is nothing to be ashamed of. The players
will come back with their appetite whetted for next season, though," said Latapy.
Hibs are currently fifth on the standings with
44 points and will be aiming to stage an
upset when they meet giants Celtic (currently second to Glasgow Rangers) on
Latapy missed T&T's 1-0 win over the Dominican Republic on Sunday but is likely to
come home for the next leg against Haiti on May 6.
MIDFIELDER Angus Eve is desperate to help Chester
City avoid relegation in the
English Third Division but he is not prepared to let their struggle prevent him from
representing this country in vital World Cup qualifying matches.
The former Joe Public captain spoke words to
this effect in a recent interview with the
Wrexham Evening Leader.
Eve, whose club are currently one spot from
the bottom of the English Third Division
table, added that his experience at the Gold Cup in February was one he would cherish
for the rest of his career and also spoke well of national coach Ian Porterfield.
"We are all fighting to stay in league football
but the World Cup games for Trinidad are
also important to me. If I don't play for the national team I won't pick up the caps that
enable me to play football in this country in the first place.
"The Gold Cup was a great experience. It was
the first time that we had really been
together for any period of time and we played some good football. As the tournament
progressed and we got accustomed to each others style of play the team went from
strength to strength. I think we were voted best playing team of the whole tournament.
The experience we gained has also given us
the belief that we can do well in the World
"We have a new coach in Ian Porterfield and
he seems to know what he is doing.
We know we have the skill but he can bring some organisation into the team which is
something we have been lacking in the past. I'm enjoying myself here and I like the
place and the people.
The manager is doing a really good job and
the team is much better organised and we
have a much better pattern of play now. I'm ambitious to play at the highest level and
my immediate goal is to also help Chester off the bottom" said Eve.
The ex-Defence Force striker was placed on
the Chester transfer list earlier this year
after signing with them last September and after Second Division side Wrexham
expressed interest in buying him they were not prepared to pay the high price City were
Columbus still tracking Sancho
DEFENDER Brent Sancho is expected to join American
A-League side Charleston
Battery later this week after signing a one -year deal two weeks ago.
But he may not stay there for long as MLS team
Columbus Crew have stepped up
their interest in him. Sancho said on the weekend that Crew officials had contacted his
agent, Graham Smith and were very keen in paying off Battery for him.
Crew, New York/New Jersey Metrostars, Tampa
Bay Mutiny and New England
Revolution were among the teams after Sancho but the MLS were preventing him from
signing a deal for less than four years.
He wants to stay there for one season before
moving to Europe and now it appears his
wish may be granted.
GOALKEEPER Ross Russell impressed Crewe Alexandra
officials in an unusual
manner during training last week Tuesday.
The Defence Force custodian played as a striker
during a training game and had the
opposition defence on their toes throughout.
But according to his agent Mike Berry, Crewe
are not likely to sign him because of any
ability he may have as a striker. They remain impressed by his goalkeeping skills.
However, with local 'keeper Clayton Ince currently
struggling to make the Crewe
starting line-up, Russell is unlikely to be contracted there.
He has also tried out with Second Division
club Bristol Rovers and Wrexham.
"There are hardly any clubs looking for goalkeepers at this point in time but Ross has
done well during his trials and still has a good future ahead.
Wrexham are definitely interested in him but
we'll have to see how things go in the
meantime" Berry said last week from England.
Russell stood between the uprights and wore
the captain's arm band in T&T's 1-0 win
over the Dominican Republic on Sunday.
Elcock's Crew win 1-0
DEFENDER Ansil Elcock held the Columbus Crew's
defence together for 90 minutes
in a 1-0 victory over the New York/New Jersey Metrostars in American Major
League Soccer on Saturday night.
Elcock who missed T&T's 1-0 win over the
Dominican Republic in World Cup
qualifying action on Sunday, reportedly had a solid game for the Crew.
Brian McBride scored the winner six minutes
from full time.
Local midfielder Travis Mulraine was on the field for 82 minutes before being replaced
by Justin Evans as his San Jose Earthquakes went under 2-0 to the Kansas City
Wizards on the weekend.
Trinidadian striker Gary Glasgow is a member
of the Wizards and made his debut two
weekends ago but did not feature in his teams' most recent outing.
Former Joe Public defender Keyeno Thomas didn't
get to do much but he did get a
slight piece of the action, coming in the 90th minute for the Colorado Rapids who lost
4-2 to the Tampa Bay Mutiny.
John's team survives
STRICKER Stern John is almost certain to play
in the First Division next season after
Nottingham Forest scored a 1-0 victory over Birmingham City on Saturday to ease
their relegation worries.
However, John did not come off the bench during
the 90 minutes.
Forest have struggled this season sitting at the bottom half of the table.
They are now in 17th spot on the 24-team standings.
After Platt signed John last year to strengthened
his team's promotion chances, Forest
were found fighting to avoid slipping to the Second Division after John was ruled out
with a ligament injury in January.
The former Columbus Crew forward is currently
working his way back to full fitness
and is looking forward to representing T&T against Haiti on May 6 in World Cup
By IRVING WARD
FOOTBALL fans could be in for a treat next
month when Trinidad and Tobago tackle
Haiti in the next round of the 2002 World Cup qualifying campaign.
If T&T coach Ian Porterfield has his way,
England-based professionals Dwight Yorke
and Stern John will make their return to the international arena.
Also expected to return to the fold are some
of the other pros who missed the action in
Santo Domingo this weekend including Russell Latapy, Clayton Ince and Ansil Elcock.
John, who campaigns with First Division club
Nottingham Forest, is just coming off a
knee injury while Yorke has been involved in Manchester United's Premier league and
UEFA Champions League campaign.
T&T have so far been able to do without
their two top strikers, but Porterfield is
mindful that he needs his strongest side for the next test.
"We know that Haiti is going to be a tough game and we respect that," he said.
"But we're going to try to prepare quite well for it."
Speaking about the availability of John and
Yorke, Porterfield said dialogue had long
been opened with both players' clubs. However, he seemed uncertain about Yorke's
"Relating to Dwight Yorke's situation, I don't
know whether he's gonna come or he's
not gonna come and it maybe depends on how well Manchester does Wednesday
(tomorrow) against Real Madrid in the Champions League."
"But that (Yorke's availability) has always
been a problem and he's a player that I'm
beginning to start to look at and wonder whether we're going to get him this season at
all. And I mean no harm by that because he's got big, big club commitments in the
European Cup and the Championship in England. But we'll soon address that situation."
Of John's status he said: "I'm hoping that
Stern John will be here for this game. We
were hoping to bring him for the Dominican Republic game just to get him to know me
and the surroundings, but he felt that he needed another couple of games and we
decided that was fine. So hopefully he will be involved."
The coach's striking options have been further
reduced following the injury to striker
Mickey Trotman during Sunday's 1-0 victory over the Dominican Republic. Trotman
tore ligaments in his left knee and has since had a cast fitted to it. The doctors in the DR
have recommended that it be kept on for the next four weeks. But soon after returning
home, Trotman went to see a T&T specialist for a second opinion.
While admitting that he was "disappointed"
with the injury to Trotman, Porterfield said
his back ups-Hector Sam and Nigel Pierre-could fill the void.
Porterfield will name a 21-man squad within
the next 48 hours for the first game. He
wants to begin preparations as early as possible. This may mean his taking some of the
players away from PFL activity.
"We've got to prepare thoroughly for this game
and the more time we can get, the
better," he said.
The availability of all the foreign-based players
would hinge on their clubs' status by the
time the English leagues conclude on the weekend of May 6 and 7.
The coach hopes to have all his players available
from May 1 for an intense period of
preparation for both legs of the Haiti tie.
Porterfield is going all out to ensure there
is no room for error. And based on what he
has seen from the players available to him so far, he is optimistic that whatever the
composition of the final squad, the team will do the job.
"The lads have done tremendously well and I'm
very happy with their commitment," he
"I have tried to build from the back. I have
tried to lay a foundation within the lads and
I think slowly things are getting better and better," he said.
HAITI, T&T SET FOR THIRD ROUND CLASH IN WORLD CUP QUALIFING
Haiti and Trinidad and Tobago are set for a
titanic clash in Caribbean Zone qualifying
for the 2002 Korea/Japan World Cup after both advanced to the third round on
Haiti ran their goal total to 20 in four qualifying matches after dispatching Bahamas 4:0
in the second leg of their second-round series, winning the tie 13:0 on aggregate.
Golman Pierre collected a pair of goals to run his personal strike total to 10, the other
two coming from Vladimir Edouard, who plays his club football at Italian lower division
side Cambo Basso.
Trinidad & Tobago defeated Dominican Republic
1:0 in a tense second leg in Santo
Domingo, winning 4:0 on aggregate. The only goal came from Nigel Pierre in the 72nd
minute as Trinidad & Tobago were again without Manchester United FC striker
Dwight Yorke, permitted to remain with his club team in anticipation of their UEFA
Champions League semifinal against CF Real Madrid on Wednesday.
Haiti and Trinidad and Tobago now meet in the
third round of Caribbean Zone
qualifying, the winner of the home-and-home series advancing to the semifinal round
where the four seeded countries (Costa Rica, Jamaica, Mexico, USA) enter the
competition. The first leg will be played in Port of Spain the weekend of May 6-7, the
second in Port-au-Prince two weeks later.
Soca Warriors advance
By SHAUN FUENTES
TRINIDAD and Tobago footballers advanced to
the third round of the 2002 World
Cup qualifying series with a comfortable 1-0 victory over the Dominican Republic in a
return leg at the Institute Preparacion de Menores in San Cristobal yesterday.
The winner came off the boot of substitute
striker Nigel Pierre in the 65th minute.
Pierre replaced Mickey Trotman just before half time after the Joe Public striker tore a
ligament. T&T now face Haiti here on May 6.
T&T get English scout
By SHAUN FUENTES
THE Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation
(TTFF) is in the process of hiring an
English scout to keep tabs on the country's overseas-based professional players.
The agent John Stubbs has been recommended
by national coach Ian Porterfield and
will be responsible for providing information on the form, injuries, fitness levels and club
engagements of the English-based players.
Stubbs is expected to start work within the
next two weeks.
Among the players on whom he will focus are Dwight Yorke, Russell Latapy, Stern
John, Anthony Rougier, Angus Eve, Marvin Andrews, Avery John, Evans Wise,
Clayton Ince, Ronnie Mauge, Ian Cox and FC Zurich's Jerron Nixon, who TTFF
president Oliver Camps has said is still eligible for selection following his omission from
the side after the Gold Cup.
According to Porterfield, Stubbs will also
keep his eyes on players in the United
"He is a guy well respected in the UK and I also have great respect for him. Things
have been processed and we will be installing our new English based scout who will
assess our present players and possibly any future players that we can obtain."
Stubbs worked with England while Glenn Hoddle
was in charge but since the change
over of that country's technical department he has been working with different teams.
Apart from working with England, the latest
addition to the T&T outfit, has also
previously worked with Sheffield United, Aberdeen and Chelsea during which time
Porterfield was at those clubs.
By SEDLEY JOSEPH
THERE is an old saying that runs "good for one, good for all".
If the people who fired Bertille St Clair while
he was still with the team in the USA take
cognisance of that saying, Chief Adeboye Onigbinde would now be history as far as
T&T's football is concerned.
I have a hunch, however, that nothing of the
sort will happen to the technical director.
Time alone will tell.
The national senior team played the first game
of second round qualifiers against the
Dominican Republic last week at the Queen's Park Oval. The crowd support was
good but there was very little for the supporters to shout about.
The team seemed to use some slight variation
of the 3-5-2 system adopted by the
former coach. Denis Lawrence was placed in midfield in front of the two-man markers,
Brent Sancho and Marvin Andrews, and Shurland David was chosen to do the
sweeper job. There were four others beside Lawrence in the midfield, Ansil Elcock on
the right, Sherwin Julien on the left and attacking midfielders Russell Latapy and Angus
Eve in the middle. Hector Sam was the player chosen to partner Arnold Dwarika up
It was very obvious from very early in the
game that the Dominican Republic had
decided to put the emphasis on defence, in the hope that they could grab at least one
point. One could not fault them for that as they were playing away from home.
When Latapy culminated a good move down the
right by crashing a blistering left-foot
shot against the right upright, everyone thought that was the signal for a T&T goal feast.
T&T did enjoy greater ball possession but the goal feast simply never came. There
were far too many square passes and, except for one by Latapy to Sam, who failed to
convert, none really split the Dominican Republic's defence.
Julien, who seemed to be a main cog in the
attacking wheel, and Elcock were having a
lot of room on the flanks, but both took much too long to make use of the ball and
frequently gave it away to the opposition. On several occasions, Julien was called on to
take freekicks in and around the 18-metre box, which was most surprising to me. His
selection on the national team continues to baffle me although I am told that the reason
he is picked is that he is the only player who uses his left foot.
If Alvin Corneal, at age 62 or thereabouts,
still has his football boots, the national
selectors should call him up. His accuracy is beyond question.
If the midfield fell down badly in the first
half, it was because captain Russell Latapy,
who is one of my favourite players, abandoned the middle and decided to join Sam and
Dwarika in the striking positions.
I don't know if he was acting on instructions
or on his own initiative. Whatever the
reason, Latapy is the organiser of the T&T midfield and that is where he has to do the
job. If he is not prepared to, someone else will have to be found to assume those
responsibilities, although I am sure there is no one at the moment who can fill Latapy's
shoes anywhere near as well.
It was not until Defence Force youngster Carlos
Edwards was introduced at the start
of the second half, and started to make some intelligent runs down the right side that
T&T looked like finding a way through. But T&T were lucky to get their first goal from
the penalty spot as the ball was already out of Julien's control when the Dominican
Republic player made the tackle and was deemed to have fouled him.
The third goal was also a lucky break, earned
by Latapy's diving skills as the
goalkeeper tried to block him.
Only the second goal was the result of a calculated
T&T move, Dwarika setting up Eve
after he intercepted Latapy's intended shot.
There can be little doubt that T&T deserved
victory but the problems remain. The
Dominican Republic only managed to launch very few attacks on the T&T citadel
although with usually only one or two T&T defenders around, there was often acres of
room on the sides of the field in the T&T defensive third.
All in all, the performance was hardly something
to inspire the supporters with
confidence about the future. If we are to qualify for the World Cup Finals, Chief
Onigbinde and new coach Ian Porterfield will have to come up with some new ideas in
the weeks and months ahead.
On the evidence so far, there is little room for optimism.
-Sedley Joseph is a former national captain
who remains a frequent commentator on
the game on radio and television.
Cautious T&T leave for return leg
By Shaun Fuentes
TRINIDAD and Tobago's senior footballers leave
this morning for Santo Domingo
mindful that they cannot take the Dominican Republic lightly in Sunday's 2002 World
Cup qualifying return leg.
Speaking after T&T drew 1-1 with Police
in a final warm up match at the Hasely
Crawford Stadium yesterday, coach Ian Porterfield questioned if the country realised
how important is Sunday's fixture, despite having a 3-0 advantage from the first leg.
"Do people realise how important it is for
us to go to the Dominican Republic and get a
good result? Here they are thinking we could send these guys or those guys and they'll
beat the Dominican Republic.
That's probably why we have never qualified
for a World Cup. Everyone just yaps .
Action speaks louder than words and if we just lean back and expect things to happen,
it won't," said Porterfield.
Missing is Hibernian midfielder Russell Latapy,
Port Vale's Anthony Rougier,
Columbus Crew's Ansil Elcock and goalkeeper Clayton Ince (Crewe Alexandra).
The Scotsman said he was pleased with the way
things have gone since he took over
from Bertille St Clair early last month, adding that the entire technical staff including the
T&T Football Federation have worked well under the circumstances.
Porterfield was, however, disappointed that
goalkeeper Clayton Ince has been ruled
out of Sunday's game, along with the unavailability of other overseas players.
"It's a big surprise because we requested his
release two weeks ago. It probably wasn't
his fault but rules are rules. We are a small country and we don't have the biggest squad
of players. We need our best players for every World Cup qualifying game."
He mentioned that those involved have gone
about preparations seriously but Sunday's
game is no easy outing.
"We've go to go there and give them the utmost
respect and I have emphasised to
every player that nothing less will do. There's no easy game in football no matter where
"The atmosphere there, the pitch conditions
and the refereeing need to be considered.
It's not going to be as easy as people think," said Porterfield.
Overseas based players Avery John of Ireland's
Bohemians FC and Raith Rovers'
Marvin Andrews were part of the action yesterday but Angus Eve who arrived from
England yesterday morning and Arnold Dwarika were on-lookers.
The rest of the squad includes Hector Sam,
Joseph Peters, Ryan Edwards
(goalkeeper), Brent Sancho, Nigel Pierre, Stokely Mason, Coulson Dick, Carlos
Edwards, Dennis Lawrence, Sherwin Julien, Ross Russell, Shurland David, Mickey
Trotman and Lyndon Andrews. Latapy nets number 13
TRINIDAD and Tobago midfielder Russell
Latapy netted his 13th goal of the season
and set up another to help Hibernian earn a 3-3 draw with St Johnstone in the Scottish
Premier League yesterday.
Having to miss T&T's World Cup qualifying
match against the Dominican Republic
today because of his commitment to Hibs, Latapy didn't disappoint his fans there
following his strike in a 3-2 loss to Aberdeen in a Scottish Cup
semifinal last Sunday.
Thirteen minutes into the action, the "Little
Magician" set Easter Road alight when he
collected on the far left and jinxed his way past two defenders before firing a shot into
the corner of the net for his ninth League goal.
After 48 minutes, "Latas" was involved again
when his cross was headed on by Martin
McIntosh for striker Mixu Paatelainen to convert from point blank range.
But St Johnstone came back and had Hibs fighting to get back in the match.
John O'Neill struck a 25-yard effort which
goalkeeper Nick Colgan could only push
onto the underneath of the crossbar before it bounced over the goal line in the 68th
Four minutes later Kieran McAnespie netted with a clever free kick and with two
minutes left substitute Keigan Parker gave Johnstone a 3-2 lead.
But Hibs got their point through substitute
Dirk Lehmann as he grabbed the equaliser in
the final minute. Latapy's club are currently fifth with 37
points on the 10-team standings.
T&T skipper Anthony Rougier and his English
First Division side Port Vale drew 2-2
with Barnsley in the English First Division. They are struggling with 35 points in second
to last position.
Local striker Stern John was not used in Nottingham
Forest's 1-0 victory over
Birmingham City. Forest are almost sure of avoiding relegation now as they stand in
17th spot with 48 points among the 24 teams in the First Division.
Local goalkeeper Clayton Ince sat out Crewe
Alexandra's 2-1 win over Queen's Park
Rangers. They are in 20th spot with 40 points in the First Division.
Dwight Yorke did not feature in Manchester
United's 4-0 whipping of Sunderland.
Yorke was rested for United's European Champions League
fixture against Real Madrid on Wednesday.
T&T look past Dominican Republic
A draw. That is all stand-in Trinidad and Tobago
skipper Ross Russell and his
teammates need to advance to the next round of the World Cup 2002 qualifiers. And
when they meet the Dominican Republic in their return leg match-up at the Instituto de
preparación de menores ground in San Cristóbal from 3.30 p.m. today, they should
easily come away with the one point they need.
The home team's proposition is more difficult-to
beat the men in red, white and black
by four clear goals to stop them from advancing to the next round where the likely third
phase opponent will be Haiti. The Haitians demolished their early round
opponents-they disposed of the Bahamas 9-0 in their second round first leg encounter
three Sundays ago. So T&T coach Ian Porterfield will want to see a clinical,
professional display from his troops today to give them just the fillip they need to face
their foes from the other half of the island.
Porterfield acknowledged that his team was
indeed faced with something of a challenge
"We have a good cushion of three goals but
we know the atmosphere is going to be
hostile tomorrow (today)," he told the Sunday Express yesterday from the team's
temporary base here at the Hotel Plaza. "But we want to go and try to win the game
and not be negative so we must go into the game very positive, very focused and have
good concentration over the 90 minutes."
According to Porterfield, the team spirit and
the attitude of all the players has been
"very encouraging over the last few days" so there is little reason why they should have
any difficulty doing the job today. However, the team will be without three keys players
who started in the first leg in Scotland-based Russell Latapy, England-based Clayton
Ince and USA-based Ansil Elcock.
Russell is the automatic replacement for Ince
who is out of the squad owing to club
But for the other two positions, there are
several options open to the coach. Lyndon
Andrews, who has forced his way back into the squad after a long absence, could get
a start as Latapy's replacement while The Defence Force's Carlos Edwards, who
performed creditably in Elcock's right wing role coming off the bench in the first leg,
should also get the nod to take the place of the Columbus Crew defender.
The shyness in front of goal by strikers Hector
Sam and Nigel Pierre, who have
partnered Arnold Dwarika up front in the previous games, might just allow Mickey
Trotman the space to get back into the starting line-up.
In the absence of Latapy who, Porterfield said,
was given a "free hand" in the first leg
encounter, tactically, the coach may also decide to lean back towards the 3-5-2
system. He shrugged off suggestions that experimentation with a new system had
affected the team's performance in the Queen's Park Oval game. He noted that, after a
nervous first half, they had stuck to the game plan, worked harder in the second period
and got the rewards for their efforts.
"I haven't changed very many things unless
I have had to because of circumstances,"
Porterfield said, "but we know what we have got to do. We know it's going to be
difficult in the first 25 minutes and we'll be prepared for that." The 57-year-old
Scotsman was hoping to see more of the same effort today but for the entire 90
minutes but he remain tight-lipped about his overall plan. That reticence suggested that
he was hoping to spring a few surprises on the home side with his line-up and tactics
"Russell is the only automatic replacement
in the side but the other departments, I feel,
are being covered adequately," he said. "I think the team has been very, very settled in
all the games. Hopefully we will rise to the occasion and go on to get a good result."
The team's main problem now remains the ground.
The T&T technical staff has already
raised the state of the pitch-which has huge cracks, as big as an inch and a half wide in
some places-has already been raised with the match commissioner. He only inspected
it late yesterday evening, giving the local officials very little time to secure an alternative
site in the event that was deemed to be necessary. The likelihood is, however, that
there will be no change, given the local federation's lack of finances and support.
But T&T have come here to play football.
"We know the surface is not going to be good
and we know that we are going to have
advantages and disadvantages," Porterfield said. "But if we are going to progress in this
competition we cannot let the obstacles get in our way."
"We have been emphasising to the players exactly
how we must approach this game.
We must find the inner strength, the desire, the heart, the determination and the will to
succeed because playing in these sort of countries can be sometimes quite distressing. "
"Hopefully we have got the ability to overcome
the situation," he ended, "and do what
is needed to progress to the next stage."
Possible starting XI: Ross Russell, Shurland
David, Brent Sancho, Marvin Andrews,
Sherwyn Julien, Carlos Edwards, Dennis Lawrence, Angus Eve, Lyndon Andrews,
Mickey Trotman and Arnold Dwarika.
By Shaun Fuentes
TRINIDAD and Tobago's senior footballers have
no intention of letting the Dominican
Republic off the hook when they clash in a 2002 World Cup qualifying return leg in
Santo Domingo from 3.30 pm today.
Despite there being a lack of interest shown
in the game there where baseball is the
major sport, T&T coach Ian Porterfield has stressed to his players that they can't
afford to take their opponents lightly at home despite holding a 3-0 advantage from the
first leg here two weeks ago.
T&T had their first work-out on the playing
field at the Institute Preparacion de
Menores last evening after two tough days in that country. They were forced to shift
hotels eventually ending up at the Plaza Hotel and a change in match venue from the
There has been little media coverage and officials
there have also offered to let patrons
see the game free of charge with the hope of attracting a respectable crowd.
Word is that Porterfield may use a 3-5-2 system.
Bohemians defender Avery John is
not expected to start with Sherwyn Julien maintaining his place and either Nigel Pierre
or Hector Sam partnering Arnold Dwarika up front.
Porterfield is optimistic of a solid performance
to advance to the third round against
"We have prepared well under the circumstances. Our guys have acted very seriously.
We know we can't afford to take them lightly
because coming to play this team 10
years ago we would be playing against the waiters and the bus drivers, but now football
has become more professional and they deserve credit for they way they played us in
the last match. But our lads also deserve credit for maintaining discipline and keeping at
them for the 90 minutes in Trinidad," said Porterfield.
Goalkeeper Ross Russell, who arrived from a
trial with English First Division club
Crewe Alexandra on Thursday, is expected to skipper the team in the absence of
regular captain Anthony Rougier and Russell Latapy.
Possible starting line-up : Ross Russell (goalkeeper),
Marvin Andrews, Brent Sancho,
Shurland David, Sherwyn Julien, Carlos Edwards, Stokely Mason, Angus Eve, Dennis
Lawrence, Hector Sam and Arnold Dwarika.
Porterfield breathes easy Eve, Russell check in
From IRVING WARD
in Santo Domingo
THE TRINIDAD and Tobago squad was finally brought
up to full strength yesterday
with the arrival of goalkeeper Ross Russell in the Dominican Republic. The Defence
Force custodian flew in from England during the wee hours of yesterday morning to
join his compatriots for tomorrow's second round return leg World Cup qualifier
against the hosts.
Russell, the last piece of coach Ian Porterfield's
player puzzle still missing, walked in
during breakfast to the great surprise of his teammates. England-based Angus Eve,
who had not travelled with the team from Trinidad earlier in the day, had also joined the
team on Thursday night
But it was only when he actually saw Russell, who had to cut short a trial with Second
Division Bristol Rovers to return for the game, that Porterfield could breathe easily.
Russell, who is again expected to wear the
captain's armband, was initially expected to
be the second choice keeper behind England-based Clayton Ince. However, just prior
to T&T's departure for Santo Domingo, Ince's Club Crewe Alexandra indicated they
were unable to release him for the game.
This forced the coach to draft Under-23 keeper
Ryan Edwards into the side as cover,
especially after it was discovered that Russell would not be travelling back to Trinidad
to link up with them and planned to join the team here in Santo Domingo.
Porterfield said that while Edwards was a young
and upcoming keeper, he would not
have felt safe putting him into this kind of pressure situation.
"It's there for everyone to see," he said.
"He's (Edwards) going to be a good young
goalkeeper, but we need experience to go into a big World Cup game like this and
that's where Russell comes in."
With T&T up 3-0 after the first leg in
Port of Spain, the home team will undoubtedly be
pushing for goals in a bid to advance ahead of Porterfield's side. But with Russell
between the uprights, the T&T coach will certainly feel a lot better about his chances of
coming out of this tie ahead.
A margin of four clear goals is what the hosts
need to keep T&T from moving on to
meet Haiti in the next round. Despite the disadvantage of an unfamiliar surface which is
not in the best condition (see Page 70), that looks well beyond the team that T&T beat
at the Queen's Park Oval earlier this month.
T&T coach has 'keeper problem
By SHAUN FUENTES
TRINIDAD and Tobago football coach Ian Porterfield
will not be calling on
Nottingham Forest striker Stern soJohn and will also have to do without the services of
Crewe Alexandra goalkeeper Clayton Ince for Sunday's 2002 World Cup qualifying
return leg against the Dominican Republic in Santo Domingo.
Already out is Hibernian midfielder Russell
Latapy, who has been replaced by Joseph
Peters and Porterfield's main worry yesterday was that there were no goalkeepers in
the T&T camp at the Concacaf Centre of Excellence, Macoya.
Porterfield was hoping that Ince would have
arrived yesterday but word is that the
former Defence Force custodian is not available as Crewe are currently nearing the end
of their season and he's not fully fit at the moment.
Ince's agent Mike Berry explained yesterday:
"Clayton is struggling a bit at the moment.
He is not 100 per cent fit at this time and it is unlikely that he will play on Sunday."
Berry added that goal-keeper Ross Russell will head straight for Santo Domingo on
Thursday, the same day the squad leaves here.
Russell has been in England over the last week
on trial at Crewe.
Police 'keeper Ryan Edwards will be drafted in.
Angus Eve was expected to arrive from England yesterday but will now arrive this
morning after his flight was cancelled because of engine problems.
Porterfield, who was still hoping to have "Latas"
up to Monday, was optimistic that
T&T would get the job done on the weekend.
"We've not got Russell (Latapy) and it would
have been nice to have him for Sunday
but unfortunately he has important games with his club and we've got to understand
"We would have also liked to have had Stern in the team but he told us that he would
like a couple more games with his club before being selected so we said okay to that.
"We are now going to play Dominican Republic
in a totally different atmosphere. It's is
going to be very hostile and we expect a difficult return leg. Our ultimate aim is to get
the right result on Sunday before we start thinking about our next opponent (possibly
Haiti). Hopefully we'll have Stern in the side for the next tie," said Porterfield."
Bohemians defender Avery John and Raith Rovers'
Marvin Andrews arrived here
They trained with the rest of the squad at the University of the West Indies Ground, St
Augustine, yesterday and will have two more sessions today.
By IRVING WARD
WITHOUT Russell Latapy, Trinidad and Tobago
might not fancy their chances of
winning this weekend's second round World Cup return leg against the Dominican
Republic. But coach Ian Porterfield looks unlikely to have the services of the
Scotland-based midfielder for the all-important leg in the Dominican Republic on
Latapy, who campaigns with Hibernian, is one
of five foreign-based players invited for
the game. The other men called up by the Scottish-born coach are England-based
Clayton Ince, Angus Eve, Scotland-based Marvin Andrews and Ireland-based Avery
John, the last two expected to arrive last night.
Porterfield had made an agreement with Hibs
that he would not be calling up the "Little
Magician", who led T&T to a 3-0 win in the home leg two Sundays ago, for the second
But manager Neville Chance yesterday confirmed
from the João Havelange Centre of
Excellence, where the local members of the squad were gathering for a live-in camp
prior to their departure on Thursday, that Porterfield has decided to request Latapy's
release after all.
"The coach has invited Latapy to join the squad
for the game," Chance told the
Express, "because he feels he is very important player to the side for this game."
The deal with Hibs management was arranged
because of the clash in dates between
the early World Cup qualifying matches and Latapy's club schedule. Latapy is just one
of several players who are being afforded the luxury of opting out of their national
But T&T's sub-par performance in the first
leg game against their Spanish-speaking
opponents in Port of Spain may have forced Porterfield to change his attitude towards
Team selection has so far been dictated by
the availability of the foreign-based players.
But the coach recently intimated to the Express that the time was coming when he
would "have to seek the country's interest first".
Chance, however, admitted that, because of
the agreement, the T&TFF would not
"press too hard" for the Little Magician's services should Hibs have a problem releasing
him this time.
But Hibs officials were yesterday already expressing
their intention to keep Latapy in
Scotland on the weekend. The club lost an automatic spot in Europe next season when
they lost 2-1 to Aberdeen in the Scottish Cup on Sunday.
Latapy scored in that defeat but Hibs' only
chance of reaching Europe will now be to
qualification as one of the top four teams in the league. That means winning all their
remaining seven Premier League matches, a quest which starts this weekend against St
Latapy, it seems, intends to be part of this drive.
"We can still get into Europe but we would
have to win all league games-we will
definitely try. It's been a great season for Hibs so far and we've been in the semifinal of
the Cup and doing well in the league so there is nothing to be ashamed of," he told
reporters after Sunday's game.
Naturally, Latapy was also upset that his effort-his 12th goal of the season-was in vain.
"It's always difficult when you lose a semifinal
especially when there's a place in Europe
But that's the nature of the game-you win some and you lose some."
"We have to keep our heads high," he ended,
"and keep plugging away every week.
But Cup games are Cup games all over the world."
Sabga backs Newcastle soccer academies
By Shaun Fuentes in Tobago
ANTHONY SABGA, chairman of the ANSA McAL Group
of Companies, has
pledged support towards the establishment of football academies by English
Premiership club Newcastle United in Trinidad and Tobago.
At a meeting Thursday at Pigeon Point Club,
Tobago with CL Financial San Juan
Jabloteh commercial manager Peter Miller and Sintra Bronte, managing director of
AJM Tours Ltd, Sabga also agreed to assist with the staging of "Britsoccer 2000"
which will see several English clubs coming to play here within the next two months.
AJM Tours will be ground handlers for the series,
organised by CL Financial Jabloteh.
Sabga will accommodate Newcastle United, Sheffield United, AFC Bournemouth and
West Ham United during their stays in Tobago at Pigeon Point Club and will also look
into providing venues here as well as in the sister isle for the setting up of the
No financial details were given but Newcastle
commercial director Alec King arrives
here Monday to assess costs involved.
It is understood that Carib may be sorting
out sponsorship of the T&T senior team and
Sabga said the ANSA McAL Group were fully behind any organised sport.
"We are the only people who have really committed
ourselves to football over the last
few years. Now we are looking at the bigger picture, which is the national team," said
About the setting up of the academies, Sabga said, "That's very interesting.
We will definitely like to see the possibility
of such a facility here. The academy will be
a very nice project. We will support any organised sport whether it is football, cricket
or any other sport. That's part of our culture."
He mentioned there were plans to construct
a mini stadium near Carib Brewery,
"The amazing thing is that we have CL Financial
and ANSA McAL working together
here which is better than signing Dwight Yorke and Stern John," said Miller following
Newcastle come to T&T for an eight-day
stay from May 16. They play a Professional
League All Star team at Hasely Crawford Stadium, Mucurapo, May 19 and a Tobago
XI here May 21.
English First Division side Sheffield United
will kick off "Britsoccer 2000" when they
arrive In Trinidad May 9 to be followed by visits from AFC Bournemouth and West
Monday April 10th, 2000
Warner wants T&T to show class
FIFA vice-president Jack Warner wants to see
this country start showing how much more superior they are than
the lower ranked teams in the 2002 World Cup qualifying tournament.
He was relating to Trinidad and Tobago's 3-0
victory over the Dominican Republic at the Queen's Park Oval
Warner also mentioned that a meeting among
officials of the T&T under-17 team will take place tomorrow to
assess their recent showing in losses to the United States (6-1), England (5-0) and Mexico (2-0).
About T&T's match Sunday, Warner said:
"I did not believe that in a match like this we could not even score a
goal in the first half. Here you have Haiti scoring nine goals against Bahamas. We have to demonstrate our level of
superiority and that wasn't done because of different reasons, one being because we took them for granted."
"Our strikers need to be more composed as well.
You cannot afford to miss chances like we did in a World Cup
qualifying match," said Warner.
He said the performance by the local under-17
side showed that they were far away from being able to match
respectable opponents, adding it was somewhat early to decided if technical adjustment were necessary.
"The whole event was used to see how near or
far we were, and it showed how far off we are. Now we are going
to put in place certain targets that have to be achieved over the next three months in the first instance. It's a bit too
early to make any changes which will give an impression of panic," said Warner.
Raith coach: No more Trinis
By Ian Prescott
RAITH ROVERS boss Peter Hetherston was fuming mad and hinted about giving defender Marvin Andrews the sack for his failure to report for duty immediately after Trinidad and Tobago's 5-0 World Cup win on March 4.
Like compatriot Russell Latapy, Andrews the big central defender, was still AWOL a week after the match during which time Carnival was at full swing here.
Boss Peter Hetherston certainly wasn't laughing and was raging mad since he hadn't even received a phone call from Andrews and, as far as he knew, he was stranded in Miami.
"This whole episode has got out of hand and
I want answers from Marvin quickly," said Hetherston. "He'd better
have a good excuse as we're paying his wages, not Trinidad and Tobago.
"Everything is relative in this game and Andrews
is as important to us as Dwight Yorke and Russell Latapy are to
Manchester United and Hibs and yet, they've returned. Albeit late. I don't need this hassle when we are trying to
get over a shock defeat by Clydebank and preparing for today's match at Livingston.
"I have phoned the Trinidad and Tobago Association
and all they could say was they didn't know what has
happened to my player. That's simply not good enough, as they were quick enough to pick up the phone when
they wanted him to play in a World Cup qualifier against the Dutch Antilles.
"It's time this whole international thing was sorted out. I mean, if a country wants one of your players then surely
it's their duty to make sure they get back to their club on time. But, it's also down to a player to find his way home
without stopping off at a Carnival. I'm bitterly disappointed Andrews hasn't even phoned me and he'll discover
how stupid it is to get on the wrong side of me.
"Maybe in the future we'll have to look carefully at who we sign and players from places like Trinidad and Tobago
may have to be ignored."
Undoubtedly, Hetherston didn't need this headache,
especially after losing three points to the Bankies earlier in the
week. When you add in suspensions to Craig Dargo, Jean-Phillipe Javary and Alex Burns, Hetherston has his
work cut out.
Trinidad and Tobago captain Anthony Rougier
has said in England he will consider retiring from playing
international football to concentrate on his professional career.
Rougier, whose wife is currently expecting
a baby, has not set a date for his exit but admitted having to constantly
travel home to represent T&T and then fly back to Port Vale (English First Division) was becoming difficult.
The 28-year-old Trinidad and Tobago skipper
has not fixed a firm date for his retirement,
"I want to continue my career in England and by the grace of God I will still be playing when I'm 33 or even more.
But it is going to be difficult to be playing for Trinidad and to keep travelling back and forth. At the moment it is
getting very nagging for me and it doesn't help the body either," said Rougier.
He has missed seven matches for Vale this season
including five straight during the Gold Cup.
"It hasn't helped with the club in the situation
we are in. I don't really want the predicament of having to choose if it
comes to having a job or playing for my country.
So it is not going to be very long before I
retire from international football. I have to concentrate on my career,
have to make provisions for my family, for my daughter and for my children's children. Playing for Trinidad for the
next few years is not going to bring that.
"But playing for a good professional career is going to do that. I have not set a date but I know it won't be very
Rougier added: "I have enjoyed every second
of playing for Trinidad and Tobago and if I hadn't been an
international player I would not have got a contract in Britain in the first place.
"My God has blessed me to play for Trinidad
and blessed me further by being captain of my country and I cherish
that and will never forget it. There will come a time when I will give back something to Trinidad and Tobago's
football, but it will be hard to repay as they have done so much for me.
"I hope one day I can be the coach of the national team or even work for the Federation," said Rougier.
Kaiser' likes T&T look
By Shaun Fuentes
Former Germany coach and captain Franz "The
Kaiser" Beckenbauer believes Trinidad and Tobago have a very
strong chance of going through to the 2002 Japan/Korea World Cup Finals.
He was impressed with the local team's showing
in their 3-0 victory over the Dominican Republic here Sunday
even though he thought T&T did not play to their full potential.
The chairman of Germany's 2006 World Cup committee left here yesterday after a three-day visit during which he
presented a copy of his country's World Cup bid to FIFA vice president Jack Warner.
Beckenbauer said there was no need for criticism
of the team's showing because they were not up against strong
opposition, hence the reason for the dull display.
"The level of the game in this region has improved a great deal ... for example yesterday when Trinidad played,
even though they did not give their best performance. To give your best performance, you need good opposition.
"But the Trinidad players didn't play with
any kind of high motivation saying we'll win the game any way. If they
had taken the game seriously the scoreline would have been much higher, but instead they used it as a training
game," said Beckenbauer, who is also president of German club Bayern Munich.
The former midfield wizard said T&T's captain
on Sunday, Russell Latapy, and Defence Force midfielder Dennis
Lawrence were outstanding. He also pinpointed strikers Hector Sam, Arnold Dwarika and defenders Marvin
Andrews and Brent Sancho.
"I thought the No.10 was very active and the
No.7 was moving throughout the 90 minutes and is also an intelligent
player. I was also impressed with the two other strikers (Sam and Dwarika) as well as the No.4 (Andrews) and
the defender with the long hair (Sancho)."
Beckenbauer said he would like to see more
T&T players in the German Bundesliga but, "it's a bit difficult for
them to play with us (Munich) because of the rule of only three non-European players on any team ... but
definitely more players from here could play in the League."
Evans Wise, currently attached to SSV ULM. is the only T&T player in the Bundesliga.
Vice president of FIFA, Jack Warner, said bureaucracy
was to blame if there was a delay in the construction of
the four stadiums in time for 2001 FIFA Under-17 Youth World Cup Championships.
Guest-speaking yesterday at the weekly lunch
hosted by the Rotary Club of Central Port-of-Spain at Queen's
Park Cricket Club, Warner said the contractors were not at fault and called on bureaucrats to get up and get
"The agreement has not been signed as yet,"
he said, and as a result, funding is slow. And that is embarrassing to
He also said football teams in Trinidad and
Tobago were now on a marketing thrust, asking businessmen and
corporate entities to be "partners" than just sponsors of the teams. Although government has been "especially
supportive" in the development of the sport, Warner said it could not do it alone.
"It depends on a collective movement, and the private sector has been too slow to take the bait," he said.
Over the past eight years, 267 scholarships
were offered to those who would have been "total scrunters."
While he was not convinced there are any local
coaches to take football to a higher international level, Warner
hoped one day, we would have a local coach to do so.
By IRVING WARD
RECENTLY appointed Trinidad and Tobago coach
Ian Porterfield will have the full support of his players within
the next couple months as the country intensify the drive towards the 2002 World Cup.
This was the word from England-based professional
Shaka Hislop at the weekend. The 31-year-old West Ham
goalkeeper is back home recovering from a broken leg he suffered earlier this year while in action in the English
Hislop was away from the team when Porterfield,
a Scotland-born coach, replaced Trinidadian Bertille St Clair
following the Gold Cup in Los Angeles in February.
The move did not go down well with several
of the more senior players on the T&T team including England-based
Dwight Yorke and Scotland-based Russell Latapy.
In fact, both players-shaken up by St Clair's
dismissal-threatened to quit the game then in emotional interviews
with the Express.
The T&TFF stuck with Porterfield though,
and he has now had the team for just over a month.
And following consultation with his teammates on the matter since his arrival here, Hislop feels they will be able to
put it behind them.
"We were all very close to Bertille and all
taken aback by the sacking, especially the manner in which it was
handled," he told the Express.
"But we are professionals and these things
do happen in our profession and we do have to deal with them. Saying
so, I'm sure in due course we'll let more of our feelings be known on that matter."
It was the consensus by members of the team
then, that the matter was dealt with in an unprofessional manner by
the local federation. St Clair was informed of his sacking by a member of his own technical staff the night before
the team was due to return home from LA.
All three players, Yorke, Latapy and Hislop
were schooled by St Clair in their early years. Hislop confessed this
was partly responsible for his colleagues' emotional response.
"We were very close to Bertille. He had some
very strong influences in our careers throughout the years and I
think that was the reason for what we said and when we said it after the situation. But probably more will be made
known in time."
The time in between the incident, according
to Hislop, has allowed for cooler heads to prevail. And now, the
squad, has refocussed its attention on reaching the World Cup.
"The situation with Bertille had nothing to
do with him (Porterfield) and was not of his making. And speaking to
the fellahs over the last couple days, I know that Porterfield has our support and certainly he'll have mine when I
come back out and make myself available for selection."
Of course, Latapy-who had indicated he would
only play on if the T&TFF could convince him such incidents
would never reoccur-has since returned. In fact, he skippered the team in Sunday's 3-0 second round first leg
qualifying win over the Dominican Republic.
Some members of Yorke's local camp have indicated that he too will follow suit.
Hislop meanwhile, will report to West Ham later
this month when he expects to begin immediate rehabilitation
work on his left leg. He expects to be back to full fitness by September and, should T&T still be in the World Cup
fray, will make himself available for duty.
But, while pointing out that there was a lot
of talent in the team, Hislop was also quick to admit that the road
ahead would be a long and hard one for T&T.
"We have a good team with a fantastic team spirit and I think that is important," he said.
"But I'm not going to sit here and say that
we'll definitely be in Korea, I think that'll be a little bit naive on
But we certainly have the tools to make this qualifying campaign a very successful one."
Bayern Munich coming to T&T
By Shaun Fuentes
Germany 2006 World Cup committee chairman Franz
Beckenbauer says he will try to get UEFA to begin giving
greater support to Trinidad and Tobago.
Beckenbauer spoke of his intentions at a media
conference at Holiday Inn yesterday as he presented Germany's
bid to FIFA vice-president, Trinidadian Jack Warner.
Beckenbauer, nicknamed "The Kaiser," also said German Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich, of which he's
president, will be coming here early next year to play T&T's senior national team in an exhibition match.
The match had been planned for next month but
was cancelled because of the club's hectic schedule.
About his plea to UEFA, Beckenbauer said:
"UEFA are doing a lot of development programmes in Africa and Asia but they do not exist in this region. But
when we return we will talk to UEFA. Because it is part of this world.
"We can do coaching changes and arrange matches,"
Beckenbauer, who spoke of his admiration for T&Tstriker Dwight Yorke, also dismissed claims of a possible
venture by Germany and England for joint bids in the hope of co-hosting in 2006.
"We are quite optimistic because our strength.
We don't have a weakness. We have excellent infrastructure. The
German Federation is by far the most biggest and effective federation in the world of sport.
"We have everything. We believe we are a strong
candidate to host a World Cup and we are not afraid of our
opposition," said Beckenbauer. He however refrained from giving his views on the other competitors including
England, South Africa, Morocco and Brazil, saying only that they were strong in their own rights.
Warner said the majority of votes from European
countries will go to Germany and he also counted out another
co-hosting even though FIFA will study the 2002 Japan/Korea tournament to see how feasible it was.
About Concacaf's vote, Warner stated: "Our
policy has always been a deliberate one. We are not going to be
rushed into making a decision but history has shown that whichever country Concacaf supports has always won
and that goes for the presidency of FIFA as well."
Each of the five competing countries will present
their official bids one month before the vote and on July 5 each
will have 30 minutes to make their presentation before the vote next day.
Germany whose campaign budget is US$10 million, were hosts of the 1974 tournament.
Monday April 3rd, 2000
Since the last update I have included game reports of Qlympic Qualifying with Canada. I have also included the under-17 friendlies versus England and the USA.
English clubs aplenty coming
By Shaun Fuentes
Former England captain Ray Wilkins is just one of the famous names
expected to be part of a group of officials coming to Trinidad in May to
help set up Newcastle's Coaching Academy in a joint effort with CL Financial
San Juan Jabloteh.
Wilkins, also a former player with Manchester United, Chelsea
and Italian First Division side AC Milan, will accompany Crystal Palace
manager Steve Coppell and Tottenham Hotspur official David Pleat on the
trip. Newcastle manager Bobby Robson will come here May 23 with his Premiership
side to play a few matches.
Wilkins, Pleat and Coppell will be working on private contracts
with Robson's club.
There are also plans to set up a coaching school in Tobago in August. Jabloteh commercial manager Englishman Peter Miller revealed that local secondary school students will have the opportunity to obtain educational and sporting scholarships financed by local businesses and Newcastle.
Miller said already Malick Senior Comprehensive, San Juan Senior
Comprehensive and Mount Hope Junior Secondary have been selected to work
with the academy. He added that youngsters of San Juan, as well as other
selected schools, will be targeted by the academy.
"We will also be aiming to have other English clubs involved in
the setting up of academies. So you could probably see some of the other
clubs coming here for instance Bournemouth or Sheffield United working
with one of the Professional Football League clubs," said Miller.
The month of May will present local fans with a chance to view
top English clubs, Wrexham, Newcastle and Sheffield United, playing exhibition
Shaka Hislop's West Ham United and AFC Bournemouth are also expected here in July. Miller mentioned that arrangements were also being confirmed to bring Scottish club Rangers and English Premiership's Chelsea and Liverpool here early next year.
Meanwhile, Miller has also helped Jabloteh to tie up a few sponsorship
deals with BWIA and other local businesses for the 2000 season.
Already, Radical Designs has agreed to supply them with clothing
supplies for off the field engagements.
England based sportswear manufacturers "Super League" will provide
Jabloteh's with their playing gears. Super League are also suppliers for
major nationwide division clubs in England.
Armband for Latapy
By IRVING WARD
SCOTLAND-BASED professional Russell Latapy
is set to make his return to the
Trinidad and Tobago team in tomorrow's first-leg second-round World Cup qualifier
against the Dominican Republic at the Queen's Park Oval from 3.30 p.m.
And the 31-year-old midfielder is set to regain
the captain's armband from Ross
Russell, who wore it in the last game against the Netherlands Antilles in Curaçao.
On that occasion, Russell got the "promotion"
in the absence of regular skipper
Club commitments will also keep Rougier out
of this weekend's engagement but
Russell's place in the starting XI will be taken by Clayton Ince.
Latapy, one of six foreign-based players in
the squad for this game, last skippered the
team during the 1998 World Cup campaign. An ankle injury suffered in one of T&T
qualifying legs against Costa Rica during that run forced him out of action.
Subsequently, a dispute between the local football
federation and the 31-year-old
Hibernian player led to the armband being taken away from him. He was replaced by
David Nakhid who took over in 1997 until he retired last year and was succeeded by
Rougier. In the interim, Latapy and the TTFF sorted out their problems but he was not
offered the armband on his return to the team.
T&T coach Ian Porterfield confirmed yesterday
evening that the policy of picking
skippers by the game will probably continue due to the problems posed by the
unavailability of the top pros.
He declined to confirm the choice of Latapy,
pointing out that he was sticking with the
policy of making the announcement after the team's final session.
"Angus Eve would have been the only other choice
with Russell to be replaced in this
game by Clayton Ince," a source told the Express. And it was clear from the "Little
Magician's" interaction with his teammates during yesterday's session that he had
already assumed his new role.
Ross Russell, Clayton Ince, Marvin Andrews, Ansil Elcock, Sherwyn Julien, Shurland
David, Coulson Dick, Brent Sancho, Dennis Lawrence, Stokely Mason, Angus Eve,
Lyndon Andrews, Carlos Edwards, Russell Latapy, Hector Sam, Mickey Trotman,
Arnold Dwarika, Nigel Pierre.
Shaka: I'll be back in August
By Shaun Fuentes
Trinidad and Tobago goalkeeper Shaka Hislop
has targeted the beginning of the next
English Premiership season in August for his return from injury.
The West Ham United custodian suffered a fibula
ligament injury on the inside of his left
ankle while in action against Bradford City in February, hours before he was scheduled
to join the T&T squad in San Diego, USA for the Football Confederation Gold Cup.
Hislop, 31, currently back home for a one-month break, said yesterday he expected to
begin light training in one month's time.
"It's going fine at the moment, slowly but
surely. Right now there's nothing much I can
do other that relax and it should be about another month before I start doing light
training. I should be ready again in three months," he said.
Hislop said having to miss the Gold Cup with
the leg injury, especially after recovering
from a hamstring pull a few days before, was one of the most disappointing
occurrences of his career. "Certainly it has been the worst injury I've ever sustained.
But these things happen to people at some stage in their careers, but probably the
timing could have been better in my case."
The ex-St Mary's College 'keeper, once eligible
to play for England, firmly believes that
the current T&T side is stronger than the "Strike Squad" of 1989.
"It is certainly one of the strongest teams
we have produced in a long time.
"I've said that I think we are better than the 'Strike Squad' and I really believe so. But
it's all about getting the results and the aim is to go one better because if we don't we'll
just have to bow to the 'Strike Squad'," said Hislop, who still has two years left on a
four- year contract with West Ham.
Like some of the overseas-based professionals,
including Dwight Yorke and Russell
Latapy, Hislop believes the technical shake-up, involving the sacking of Bertille St Clair
as coach, could have been done in a more appropriate manner.
"It was poorly handled and was disappointing
for me that he's not there because
Bertille had a part to play in my career since I worked with him at age 12. It really was
a pleasure coming back and playing under him with the national team and I can say that
if it wasn't Bertille in charge last March (Hislop's T&T debut against Jamaica), I
probably would not be with the team today. He certainly played a big part in me
"But I have spoken to him on two occasions
since and he has come to terms with it and
we the players have to do so as well," said Hislop, who expects to attend T&T's
World Cup qualifier against the Dominican Republic at Queen's Park Oval tomorrow.
Porterfield ready to fight for Yorke
Trinidad and Tobago are prepared to fight Manchester
United for Dwight Yorke by
calling up the striker for the second leg of their World Cup qualifier against the
Trinidad and Tobago coach Ian Porterfield has
agreed to excuse Yorke for the first
match this Sunday but says he will draft Yorke into his pool for the return match in the
Dominican Republic on April 16 if he feels he needs him.
This would sideline Yorke for United's Premiership
home match with Sunderland that
Porterfield may be prepared to do without Yorke
for now, but he will not be as
accommodating if Trinidad and Tobago progress to the next round where they will face
Haiti on either May 6 or 7 and May 20 or 21 - matches that would clash with the
climax to United's season in the Premiership and Champions' League
Pierre returns to Public
By SHAUN FUENTES
LOCAL striker Nigel Pierre may return to the
Joe Public line-up when the 2000
Professional Football League season kicks off next Wednesday.
Pierre who is currently training with the T&T
senior squad, had a second work permit
appeal held by Bristol Rovers turned down by the Department of Employment in
England last week. Ian Holloway, manager of the English Second Division club, said
Pierre was likely to rejoin Public.
Holloway assured that he would be monitoring
the strikers' progress here, also denying
claims that the England 2006 World Cup campaign asked the Government to bend any
rules to allow Pierre's permit.
Joe Public manager Richard Abraham said he
hadn't gotten word on Pierre's return but
added that he would be welcomed by Public, who begin their season against CL
Financial San Juan Jabloteh on Wednesday at the Concacaf Centre of Excellence.
Abraham said that Public have allowed contracted
trio Kendall Velox, Rodney Stokes
and goalkeeper Donovan Thomas to remain with Courts Caledonia AIA.
The two began training with the PFL newcomers
without consent from their club, Joe
Public. Abraham added that his club is now awaiting transfer fees.
Yorke cautious against Madrid
THE PRO LOOK By SHAUN FUENTES
MANCHESTER United striker Dwight Yorke was
a relieved man on the weekend
after hearing that Trinidad and Tobago were willing to let him sit out World Cup
qualifying action in order for him to play in a European Champions' League encounter
against Real Madrid on April 4.
The 28-year-old forward, allowed to miss Sunday's
game here against the Dominican
Republic, is still wanted by T&T coach Ian Porterfield for a later tie against Haiti in
May once the local squad progresses.
Because of the latest club versus country row, United manager Alex Ferguson is
apparently frustrated with having to put up with times like these.
Meanwhile, Yorke says United will have to be
extra cautious against the Spanish
"You look at the likes of Real and people are saying that they are not having a great
season, but they have a lot of quality in their team. If they play to their capabilities, then
they can give anybody a game.
"But once we play to our capabilities, we can
give every team in the world a good
game. They won't want to see us at our best because we can be very dangerous" he
said last week.
The English press hyped the club versus country
matter stating that once again United
were able to use their power to keep Yorke.
Also referring to United's 4-0 win over Bradford
City on Saturday, the English
Telegraph stated "Two significant international spin-offs materialised from the latest
awesome show of strength by the world's richest club. Trinidad and Tobago look likely
to suffer through the all-conquering exploits of Manchester United; England will surely
Yorke's hattrick scoring performance against
Derby County three weeks ago has been
hailed as the fifth best individual performance in the English Premiership this season.
Alan Shearer's five goals in an 8-0 win over Sheffield Wednesday topped the ratings.
Yorke who was experiencing a scoring drought prior to that game, now has 19 goals
for the season.
McLeish concerned about Latapy
Hibernian manager Alex McLeish has expressed
concern over the physical state of
local midfielder star Russell Latapy because of his constant journeys to Trinidad and
Tobago to line up for the national team in World Cup qualifying matches.
Latapy was with T&T for the Gold Cup in
the United States in February followed by a
trip home to face the Netherlands Antilles earlier this month.
He is now expected to do more travelling from Scotland for upcoming qualifiers.
McLeish said this will definitely be added burden on the "Little Magician."
"The player himself said that the travelling definitely tires you out."
"The more you travel in a short space of time
the more it takes its toll. Alex Ferguson
mentioned Dwight Yorke being tired with all the travelling he has done. "Dwight did
score a hat-trick the other week but he hasn't done half as much as Russell," said
Latapy's team suffered 2-0 and 1-0 losses to
Dundee United and Kilmarnock
respectively last week.
The former FC Porto player currently has 10 goals for Hibs this season.
Andrews waits on Hibernian recall
LOCAL midfielder Lyndon Andrews has completed
a trial at Scottish Premier League
club Hibernian and is now awaiting a recall from manager Alex McLeish as a possible
contract looms in the near future.
Andrews was recently featured in the Edinburgh
Evening News after watching
countryman Russell Latapy score a double to guide Hibs to a 3-1 victory over Hearts.
"The atmosphere was fantastic, the supporters
were at it from the beginning to the end
and I'd love to play in that sort of game," said Andrews. "I'm keeping my fingers
crossed and hoping for the best.
I've been doing my best in a couple of Under-21
matches I've played for Hibs to
persuade Mr McLeish to sign me but that game has made me really anxious that he
does so. There was an incredible intensity about the game, the reaction of the fans
makes you want to raise your level of play.
"We don't get crowds like that at home, a few
hundred usually, and they are not so
supportive so to see thousands of supporters so passionately involved was brilliant.
"I was looking forward to the experience of
a derby with Hearts and it certainly lived
up to my expectations. Hopefully next season I'll get the chance to play in such a game,
I'm sure I'd love it."
The former Joe Public player added that Latapy
being a part of Hibs made the going
somewhat easier for him and is keen on playing alongside the midfield wizard if given
St Lucian striker Earl Jean, a teammate of
Andrews at Vibe CT 105 W Connection
last year also went to Easter Road and has been signed on loan.
Andrews is likely to be part of the W Connection
team for the early stages of the 2000
Professional League which kicks off on April 5 and at the same time will be trying to
regain a spot on the T&T senior team.
Rougier says T&T can fare well without him
NATIONAL captain Anthony Rougier has been excused
from playing for this country
against the Dominican Republic on Sunday by national coach Ian Porterfield so that he
can remain and help Port Vale out of relegation problems in the English First Division.
Rougier, who also missed T&T's 1-1 draw
with the Netherlands Antilles recently, is
confident that T&T will not miss his services.
''All World Cup games are important, but the
team should be strong enough to win this
one without me. 'It is more important at this stage for me to be here with my Port Vale
team-mates and Ian Porterfield knows how difficult things are. He has assured me I'm
still very much part of the squad and will carry on being involved in the future,'' Rougier
said last week.
Tony is an important player for us."
Missing Sunday's World Cup qualifier will allow Rougier to play for Vale against
Portsmouth on Saturday and Charlton Athletic next Tuesday.
Vale are struggling in 23rd spot on the First Division standings.
Rovers still having problems with Pierre permit
ENGLISH Second Division side Bristol Rovers
are facing a difficult fight to secure a
work permit for local striker Nigel Pierre.
The club had an appeal turned down by the Department
of Employment last week and
manager Ian Holloway was left in angry state after presenting a strong case of video
evidence of Pierre in action for the club.
Pierre has already signed a three year contract
but is only being allowed to play with a
permit secured based on the fact that he was originally contracted by Oxford United.
Rovers will be hoping that Pierre recovers from an instep injury obtained during T&T's
Olympic qualifier against the Netherlands Antilles last week.
Glasgow hopes for MLS debut
FORMER Defence Force striker Gary Glasgow will
be hoping to make his debut for
the Kansas City Wizards when they face the Colorado Rapids in the American Major
League Soccer (MLS) on Saturday.
Glasgow was snapped up by Kansas last month
after coach Bob Gansler remembered
seeing him in action some time ago.
"I first saw Gary (Glasgow) a number of years ago, and then in the A-League when he
played against my Milwaukee Rampage. He scored then and has been scoring since
with New Orleans, Richmond and the Trinidad National Team.
"He's a goal scorer with a forte to create
these goals himself. Gary is very quick with
the ball and off the ball and has the ability in the box to create his own opportunities.
"He will be a great complement to the forwards we already have." said the former
American national team coach.
The 23-year-old Glasgow finished as second
leading scorer for Richmond Kickers in
last season's American A-League with 13 goals.
He also lined up for the New Orleans Storm in 1998 Glasgow will be reunited with
Wizards General Manager Curt Johnson, who was the Vice President and General
Manager of the Kickers.
Local defender Keyeno Thomas will also be hoping
to make his debut for Colorado
after missing Saturday's game because of national under 23 duty.
Ansil Elcock combined with teammate Dante Washington
to set up Brian West's 85th
minute goal which put the Columbus Crew 1-0 ahead against the San Jose
Earthquakes, side of local midfielder Travis Mulraine, on Saturday.
San Jose equalised but the Crew went on to win 2-1 in sudden death extra time.
Courting Jack Warner
FIFA vice president Jack Warner has been hailed
by the English Football Association
as a wonderful ambassador of this country and the Caribbean to an extent.
The 57-year-old Joe Public owner received praises from English FA chairman Geoff
Thompson here last Friday.
The English press says their FA is willing
to offer almost anything to lure Warner into
giving the Football Confederation's vote to them as they seek to host the 2006 World
Warner said he will accept their assistance with open arms but denied that such a thing
will interfere with the Confederation's vote.
After newspapers in England stated that Ian
Porterfield's coming to Trinidad was part
of the English FA's way of getting Warner on their side, the Confederation advisor
denied it, saying instead the T&T Football Federation had contracted the ex-Zambia
coach for two years and were paying his salary.
Popular English internet Web Site English Soccernet
carried a report on the weekend
giving an insight on England's attempt to win Warner's vote. Following is the text:
Against the calypso beat of a steelband, the teenage boys in England shirts shuffled
self-consciously on the lawn of the residence of the British High Commissioner.
On the steps of the colonial-style house, Geoff
Thompson, chairman of the Football
Association, waited to address those assembled at the cocktail reception on Friday
"Jack Warner is a wonderful ambassador. He has done more than anyone could
imagine for football in this part of the world," said Thompson.
As he concluded, the boys in their maroon England
shirts, including Jermaine Pennant
from Arsenal, team captain Ben Clark from Sunderland and Ben Willetts from Aston
Villa, politely joined the applause, without having the faintest clue as to the part Warner
will play in their own destiny.
But Warner, a 57-year-old local business tycoon,
is the reason these young men have
travelled 4,500 miles to lend stature to a four-nation youth tournament which begins on
Monday. Their presence is critical to the ambassadorial mission designed to bring the
2006 World Cup to England, a tournament these boys dream of playing in.
Warner, however, is no stranger to Alec McGivan,
a man tirelessly travelling the world
to build support for England 2006. As head of the campaign team, McGivan says: "I'm
sure Jack Warner will be at the heart of the outcome of FIFA's decision."
On July 6, Warner will have one of the 24 votes
on the FIFA executive committee
which will determine whether the 2006 World Cup is hosted by England, Germany,
South Africa, Morocco or Brazil. In reality, his constituency is significantly greater.
As president of CONCACAF, the footballing territory
embracing North America,
Central America and the Caribbean, he will influence the vote of Chuck Blazer from the
United States and David Sasso of Costa Rica.
"We have three votes but we vote as a group,
which is controlled and directed by me
in my capacity as president," revealed Warner.
He is outraged by the assumption from ill-informed commentators that, as a black man,
his vote is automatically destined for South Africa. "Some of what I have read smacks
of racism - I have to laugh," he said.
"It's asinine to suppose that the colour of
my skin affects my choice. I've never taken a
decision based on race, it's not the way I operate."
McGivan has never assumed such a stance. Instead,
he has dedicated time, resources
and promises in this region. In January, England coach Kevin Keegan spent three days
there giving a clinic to impoverished kids living in the hills above this sprawling city, as
well as distributing the awards at Joe Public, the professional club owned by Warner.
The gesture greatly impressed Warner, who has
controlled footballing politics in this
region for the past decade.
This weekend members of McGivan's team have
been conducting a workshop that has
attracted some 50 delegates from all over the Caribbean. Again, this is interpreted as
the courting of Warner's validation of England's cause.
Not unnaturally, Warner will not publicly declare
his hand. He still has much to gain
politically from keeping his counsel, allowing South Africans, Germans, Moroccans and
Brazilians to suppose they might yet attract his allegiance.
Yet, significantly, Warner says: "We have seen
more of people from the England bid
than anyone else. We have historical ties, we have cultural ties, constitutional ties and
legal ties. In fact, we are a microcosm of England.
"The new thinking within the English FA since
the changes occurred in high office have
made the FA more humane and more understanding. Of course, the World Cup bid
was a catalyst but I have reason to believe that the development aid in this region for
football will continue long after the bid has closed."
Certainly, the intensity of McGivan's strategy
there has been given saturation coverage.
The presence of the England Under-16 team to play in the friendly competition against
Trinidad, Mexico and the US this week is another example of letting Warner know the
seriousness of England's crusade.
McGivan said: "I first met Jack about two-and-a-half
years ago and didn't know him
from Adam. But we've become friends and we've paid people like Jack the respect of
coming out to meet them in their countries, rather than expecting them to come to
England all the time. We have tried to break down the barriers of Englishmen being
stuffy and formal."
McGivan has travelled some 400,000 miles -
'about a month sitting in an aeroplane,
day and night' - with many more to come in the 102 days to go before the critical vote
At the cocktail reception there, McGivan and
Thompson were in deep discussion with
Dr Joao Havelange, nowadays the honorary FIFA president but for almost a quarter of
a century the most powerful voice in the world game.
He looked approvingly at the youngsters in
England shirts, chaperoned by Les Reed,
director of technical development at the FA, and national goal-keeping coach Ray
Havelange said: "Of course, I am unable to
give an opinion as to whom I think will be
awarded 2006 but I would like to congratulate Prime Minister Tony Blair for having the
courage to destroy Wembley and build a new one for the millennium.
"This represents a new development in the game
and if England did win the World
Cup, which country would not be celebrating with them?"
Newcastle to set up T&T soccer academy
ENGLISH Premiership side Newcastle United will
be setting up a football academy in
Trinidad later this year in an attempt to be the first club to find up and coming local
This was revealed by the club's manager Bobby Robson earlier this month.
The former England manager and player will
be bringing his team here in May to play
against local clubs and a representative side.
But Robson appears to more interested in setting
up the nursery which will come about
through the efforts of Englishman Peter Miller, commercial manager of CL Financial
San Juan Jabloteh and a past employee of the St Lucian Association.
"We have been able to arrange this through
a contact of mine in the Caribbean.
"So we are going there to build a liaison with them and this will mean that we will get
access to the best players in Trinidad and Tobago," Robson said.
Miller is also Newcastle's representative in
the Football Confederation (formerly
ConcacAF) and is excited about the link which he says will open a new door for local
players aiming to follow in the footsteps of Manchester United striker Dwight Yorke
and goalkeeper Shaka Hislop, a past Newcastle player.
"This will be the start of a something very
big and of tremendous benefit to Trinidad and
Tobago football," said Miller.
Newcastle, as well as other English clubs West
Ham United, Sheffield United,
Wrexham and AFC Bournemouth, are expected here for friendly matches over the
next six months.
MANCHESTER United striker Dwight Yorke has
been excused from playing for this
country in their next two 2002 World Cup qualifying ties so that he can remain with his
club as they seek to capture a second straight European Champions' League title.
Word out of England yesterday was that after
being called up by coach Ian Porterfield
for next Sunday's match against the Dominican Republic here, Yorke and United boss
Alex Ferguson were worried he would miss their Champions' League quarter- final
encounter against Real Madrid April 4 and the return leg April 19.
Reports from the English Express also stated
Yorke was considering retiring from the
international game last week.
But the T&T Football Federation have excused Yorke from both legs against the
Dominican Republic (April 2 and April 16) as well as Haiti in May once T&T were to
Yorke thanked the TTFF for their cooperation.
"I won't be going to Trinidad to play in the World Cup games. We have reached an
agreement and they will release me to play for United in the European Cup, if selected.
"I am very pleased and lucky that we have been
able to come to this arrangement. I
would like to thank the Trinidad and Tobago FA for their cooperation and
understanding," said Yorke.
When he first received the request from the TTFF, Ferguson openly expressed
"It certainly makes you consider whether it
is worth signing players like Dwight Yorke.
We won't have Dwight Yorke for the game. He is on international duty. I can't believe
it. Dwight will be disappointed to miss a quarter-final against Real Madrid. He might
never play there again, but the die is cast. He has been selected by Trinidad and
Tobago. Will he quit international football? I don't know, that is his decision," said
Playing for T&T would have also meant Yorke
missing United's Premiership fixture
with West Ham United next Sunday and against Sunderland April 15.
T&T will most likely meet Haiti in May, and United are billed to face the winners of the
Porto/Bayern Munich tie May 3 and 10.
On realising that calling Yorke would affect
United, Porterfield said he would speak
with FIFA vice president Jack Warner before coming to a decision.
"At the time we thought it would be okay and that he would miss the one league game
and he would then be back with his club on the Monday. We've just got wind of this
and we're now readdressing the situation.
"We were hoping if we had Dwight and got a
good result we wouldn't need him for the
second game. Maybe now we should allow Dwight to miss the first two games in the
hope that he would be allowed to come for the Haiti games, providing we qualify of
course. We don't want to force him to play and we want to have good relations with
"We want to work with Manchester United and
if we progress in the World Cup
qualifying we are going to need Dwight," said Porterfield.
The good news for United and Yorke seemed to inspire the Old Trafford side as they
thrashed Bradford City 4-0 yesterday with Yorke getting a double to send his season
tally to 19.
'Latas' comes home today
SCOTLAND-based midfielder Russell Latapy is
expected back home today to join
the national senior team for preparations ahead of their next 2002 World Cup
qualifying match against the Dominican Republic scheduled for Hasely Crawford
Stadium, Mucurapo, next Sunday.
Chester City striker Angus Eve will also be
Raith Rovers defender Marvin Andrews, Columbus Crew's Ansil Elcock, goalkeeper
Clayton Ince are expected here tomorrow for live-in camp at Concacaf Centre of
Excellence, Macoya, which begins later that day.
SSV ULM's Evans Wise is out of the qualifier
as he's currently suffering from an
Achilles tendon injury.
National coach Ian Porterfield has agreed with Port Vale to let captain Anthony
Rougier remain with the club as they aim to avoid relegation from the English First
T&T administrator Neville Chance was pleased
that the overseas players were making
the effort to return for training, but said that Nottingham Forest striker Stern John will
not be called up despite making a return to action from injury last week.
"The report that we got is that Stern did have
a try-out with his club but we feel it is
inappropriate to call him for duty at this time as he's still on his way to full recovery,"
After viewing T&T's 0-0 draw with Guatemala
in an Olympic qualifying match
Thursday, Porterfield was hoping for the best possible team.
"Of course it will be nice to have all the players available. They all seem willing to play,
but we have agreed to allow Rougier to remain with his club," said Porterfield.