Trinidad and Tobago Women’s National Under-20 Team goalkeeper Rebecca Almandoz was a picture of defiance as the two island republic avoided a lopsided score summary in their opening 2015 CONCACAF Championship fixture against Canada yesterday in San Pedro Sula, Honduras.
At the final whistle, the North American outfit emerged 2-0 victors but it might easily have been worse as they peppered the teenaged “Women Soca Warriors” with shots.
The match stats showed that Canada managed 25 shots over the 90 minutes with 10 efforts on target, most competently handled by Almandoz, and one off the woodwork.
Trinidad and Tobago, captained by defender Renee Mike, did not muster a single shot—on or off target—and had just one corner kick to show for their offensive efforts in the game.
National Under-20 Team coach Jason Spence commended his players for their application and spirit, despite less than ideal preparation. And Spence suggested his squad had “closed the gap” on Canada, notwithstanding the fact that they were bombarded throughout the contest.
“Credit definitely has to be given to the players for literally jumping off a plane to face a power house in women’s football and giving a gallant, solid showing,” Spence told the TTFA Media. “We will certainly be building on this game. We lost the game in two moments of not shutting down the play quick enough.
“The positives certainly are that we have shown growth in the way and methods we use at this level. The scoreline in the CONCACAF Under-17 qualifier, two years ago, was a 11-0 victory for Canada from which the same core of players were involved.
“So clearly we have closed the gap and certainly if we had gotten the preparation I asked for and we arrived in Honduras earlier it would have put us in a better position psychologically and physically.”
Spence also credited his charges’ tactical discipline in the fixture.
“We made life quite frustrating for them as we stuck to our shape and we were disciplined for the most part of the match,” said Spence. “Unfortunately we have to use the games in the tournament also as our warm up games.
“Nevertheless I am pleased with the way and the discipline shown by the team tonight.”
The Trinidad and Tobago U-20s will be in action again on Saturday against the host nation, Honduras, from 7.30 pm in San Pedro Sula.
Yesterday, Honduras opened their campaign with a 2-2 draw against Jamaica.
Trinidad and Tobago: 1.Rebecca Almandoz (GK); 2.Shaunalee Govia, 3.Renee Mike, 4.Sawsha Woznuk, 5.Amaya Ellis, 6.Kelsey Henry (19.Ranae Ward 77), 8.Shanelle Arjoon, 14.Chevonne John, 17.Kedie Johnson (9.Raenah Campbell 46), 18.Naomie Guerra, 10.Tsaianne Leander (20.Laurelle Theodore 65).
Unused substitutes: 12.Nicolette Craig (GK), 13.Chelsea Frederick, 15.Paul Shenieka, 11.Celeste Thomas, 16.Tonya Richards, 7.Maya Matouk.
Coach: Jason Spence
Referee: Alondra Arellano (Mexico)
CONCACAF Under-20 Championship results
(Thursday December 3)
Canada 2 (Sarah Kinzner 16, Martina Loncar 81), Trinidad and Tobago 0 at San Pedro Sula
Jamaica 2, Honduras 2 at San Pedro Sula
(Saturday December 5)
Canada v Jamaica, 5 pm, San Pedro Sula
Honduras v Trinidad and Tobago, 7.30 pm, San Pedro Sula.
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Awesome saves wow!
Gold cup of 2001 (i think) USA vs T&T score 3-0. Jamaal went with 5 -4 -1 set up because he understood the Herculean qualities of the opposition. We probably got over the half line once or twice in either half. At the media conference reporters were hailing it as a victory for T&T football. Mia Hamm didn’t score. They spoke about the gigantic steps that have been made in the female version of our game. When interviewed the then goal keeper Lisa Joe accidentally said she was so happy with the win against the US. Just being able to match up physically is the greatest task. That, in my opinion is the single greatest hurdle facing coaches in the women’s game here. I think JS has realised that there is not difference between the two teams technically which is why he has made the statement. Jamaal is arguably the best tactician in the local game and his teams were almost always bulldozed by the athletic supremacy of the north Americans and not as a result of superior technique or advanced tactics. Our senior players have been able to bridge the gap physically to some extent as most of them have been exposed to the rigors of the US collegiate & pro leagues. Our youth teams may have a couple players with that sort of experience but most of them have not a clue as to the physical demands of the game at that level so its always going to be a taller order for them. Rest up team, win the next two and lets see how the dice roll in the quarters.
On to the next match Ladies, We are on the Road to Success with Persistence and Positivity…#GoT&T???⚽!!!
Rebecca is awesome, but “closing the gap” not having gotten off a single shot is a bit far fetched….
Yes. That was a bit generous from the coach there. Rebecca Almandoz’s handling looked pretty sound. Well done to her.
The improvement in women’s goalkeepers over the past decade or two is eye opening.
I played a “fete match” one day with that girl keeper Rebecca in goal for my team..and that was like 3 yrs ago…she was outstanding…to the point the opponents were saying they did not want to hit bullets at her da da da …we told them ” nah..hit bullets man “…and they did…and still could not score…hahha
She looked to have pretty good handling in the highlights. 😉
Zero shots on goal to 25 and he says you’re closing the gap? You don’t do your players justice by giving unrealistic critique ….you don’t have to be a qualified coach to put 11 players behind a ball and tell them to defend…. where are we finding these coaches?
25 shots to zero doesn’t suggest we worried Canada for sure. To be fair, I will have to go back to our game against the US in the CONCACAF qualifiers last year.
I guess the goal here was not to concede more than 3 to canada and hope they find their shooting boots against the other teams so we get in on goal difference…. the set up was a 4 5 1 and canada went with a 4 3 3 … with that 451 there was clear intend to defend for our lives with no real intent to attack….. Man say closing the gap yes…. gave up 70% possession with 25 shots…. I wonder if the girls in the back have any legs to play the next two games…. #PARKDEPTSCBUS
Only saw the highlights, but I’m not sure that “closing the gap” is the right description. The goals conceded may have been drastically reduced, but is it as a result in a rise in our level of play? Twenty five shots to zero is a big disparity. Many of those shots just whizzed by the posts, and if not for the heroic work of Almandoz, we may have been on the other end of an embarrassing scoreline. Yes, take the positives, but doh overdo it.
Couldn’t get a shot off? :/