The “Soca Warriors” will aim to end a four match winless streak at 7 pm tomorrow (midday TT time) when they face Jordan in Amman in what is likely to be their final 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup warm-up match.
The Trinidad and Tobago National Senior Team last tasted victory on 13 November 2014 with a 4-2 Caribbean Cup group stage win over French Guiana in Jamaica. Since then, the Warriors drew to Cuba, lost on penalties to Jamaica in the final and were edged 1-0 by Panama and Curaçao in friendly assignments this year.
Warriors coach Stephen Hart will hope for more luck at the Hassan International Stadium, although he suggested that Jordan can be “pretty decent” at home.
Jordan is ranked 103rd in the world by FIFA while the Warriors are 67th.
“Both countries are looking to sharpen their games ahead of World Cup campaigns and for us, we also have the Gold Cup coming up,” Hart told TTFA Media. “I don’t know much about Jordan except for seeing them on video in their recent games and they look to be pretty decent especially when they are at home.
“But we will take on the challenge with the approach that the game will give us that opportunity to see where we’re at currently. And of course everything is in relation to us getting ready for the Gold Cup.”
Midfielder Khaleem Hyland, who recently signed a one-year deal with Belgium top flight club KVC Westerlo, said the Warriors are trying to stay focused on the matters at hand, despite the off field rumblings between Trinidad and Tobago FA president Raymond Tim Kee and Sport Minister Brent Sancho.
“We have the talent with a lot of youngsters knocking on the door but we have to understand our roles and functions,” said the 26-year-old Hyland, who has 47 senior national caps. “It’s a bit frustrating seeing that there are matters that needed to be ironed out off the field of play. But as a more experienced player now and along with the other experienced players in the squad, we’ve been talking, especially to the newer guys to try and stay focus on the job at hand.
“We’ll be working hard to take care of business on the pitch and hopefully things will work out in our favour in the long run.”
The Warriors open their Gold Cup tournament against Guatemala in Chicago on July 9. Thirty-one-year-old Defence Force striker Devorn Jorsling, who has not represented his country in two years, is among the Pro League talent who are trying to seal their positions in the final squad.
Jorsling’s international returns are 17 goals from 38 appearances, which is only bettered only captain and Cardiff City forward Kenwyne Jones’ 18 goals from 69 outings in the current squad.
Jorsling has never scored against non-Caribbean opposition and would hope to put that right against Jordan.
“I have been out of the national team for quite some time but I’ve put my head down and done what was required to get back in,” said Jorsling. “Now hopefully I can bring some experience and goalscoring ability to the team. It’s not going to be an easy assignment for us but I think as a team we are building towards the Gold Cup and every game is a stepping stone for us.”
(Team for Jordan friendly)
Goalkeepers: Jan-Michael Williams (Central FC), Marvin Phillip (Point Fortin Civic);
Defenders: Kaydion Gabriel (Central FC), Radanfah Abu Bakr (HB Koge—Denmark), Sheldon Bateau (KV Mechelen—Belgium), Mekeil Williams (W Connection), Daneil Cyrus (W Connection), Aubrey David (Shakhter Karagandy—Kazakhstan), Joevin Jones (Chicago Fire—USA);
Midfielders: Andre Boucaud (Dagenham & Redbridge—UK), Leston Paul (Central FC), Khaleem Hyland (KVC Westerlo—Belgium), Ataulla Guerra, Sean De Silva (both Central FC), Keron Cummings (North East Stars);
Forwards: Shahdon Winchester (W Connection), Kenwyne Jones (Cardiff City—UK), Devorn Jorsling (Defence Force), Cordell Cato (San Jose Earthquakes—USA), Lester Peltier (Slovan Bratislava—Slovakia), Willis Plaza (Central FC).