Wired868 serves up football treat

The Wired868.com online newspaper served up a treat for football fans on 9 January 2013 with the inaugural Wired868 Football Festival at the UWI SPEC ground in St Augustine.

An exhibition match between a Wired868 XI and an Earl “Mango” Pierre XI was the highlight of the evening and ended in a 2-2 draw.

Photo: Former Trinidad and Tobago national midfielder Ricardo Aleong (right) tries to protect the ball from present “Soca Warrior” Carlyle Mitchell.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

Former “Strike Squad” and Boavista striker Leonson Lewis scored twice for Wired868 and produced some dazzling touches to win the Most Valuable Player award of a weekend for two at the Cascadia Hotel in St Ann’s.

Photo: Wired868 and ex-Strike Squad striker Leonson Lewis (right) dances past an opponent.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

The evening’s MVP was selected by a three man panel that comprised of Trinidad and Tobago national co-head coach Jamaal Shabazz, Guyana and North East Stars defender Charles Pollard and former World Cup linesman Merere Gonzales.

Photo: Trinidad and Tobago coach Jamaal Shabazz (right) has a chat with Richard “Sheppy” Shepherd at the Wired868 Football Festival.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

The Mango XI did not roll over though and pulled level through a penalty from former Queen’s Park playmaker Ricardo Aleong and an item from former Belmont Secondary stand-out Marvin Joseph.

Photo: Wired868 goalkeeper and CNMG sport anchor James Saunders (left) brings down opposing striker Marvin Joseph for a penalty.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

The Football Festival stated its intention to bring out the country’s stakeholders in the support as well as the icons who contributed to Trinidad and Tobago football’s glory days. They do not come much bigger than former football legend and Strike Squad coach Everald “Gally” Cummings, who remains the only footballer to be named Trinidad and Tobago’s Sportsman of the Year.

Photo: Trinidad and Tobago football icon Everald “Gally” Cummings (second from left) hangs out with national coach Hutson “Barber” Charles (second from right), Central FC coach Terry Fenwick (far left) and former World Youth Cup playmaker Anthony Sherwood (far right).
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)


Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation (TTFF) president Raymond Tim Kee, Pro League CEO Dexter Skeene and Veteran Footballers Association president Selby Browne were present too as well as a few dozen football fans scores of past players and present coaches.

Photo: TTFF president Raymond Tim Kee (far right) has a word with ex-Strike Squad captain Clayton Morris (centre) and former World Cup linesman Merere Gonzales.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

National technical director Anton Corneal, joint head coach Hutson “Barber” Charles, ex-Strike Squad captain Clayton “JB” Morris, Central FC coach and former England World Cup defender Terry Fenwick, former national stand-out Ron La Forest, 1991 Under-20 World Cup defender Roger Henry and present “Soca Warrior” Carlyle Mitchell were among the Wired868 players.

Photo: The Wired868 Invitational Team.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

World Cup 2006 defender Brent Sancho, Caribbean Cup winner Kerwin “Hardest” Jemmott and former US Major League Soccer (MLS) attacker Darin Lewis were among the more notable players in the Mango XI.

Photo: The Earl “Mango” Pierre XI.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

The game itself was keenly contested.

Photo: Former World Cup defender Brent Sancho (left) appeals in vain for a penalty but Wired868 goalkeeper James Saunders (centre) sees the funny side.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

But, more importantly, it was played in the spirit of camaraderie.

Photo: Former national playmakers Kerwin “Hardest” Jemmott (left) and Ron La Forest see the lighter side of sprinting.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

Wired868 wishes to thank all its forumites who came out to enjoy the evening’s proceedings.

Photo: Wired868 forumites Declan Squires (left), David Smith (centre) and Christian Hume get acquainted.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

And, of course, the football fans.

Photo: Former Real Dimensions player Christine Rose (centre) gets ready for the action.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

Due to the overwhelming response from players, there is likely to be two exhibition matches at the second Football Festival.

Photo: Young football fan Elijah Sankar (right) is hoping to see action but Jayden Sancho (left) just found out he must wait another year or two.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

Special thank you as well to sponsors like Carib, Cascadia Hotel, Easi-Pharm, Sasha Cosmetics and Fairy Sweet as well as the University of the West Indies for providing a venue.

Photo: Brent Sancho (left) receives the Easi-Pharm “Spirit of Wired868” hamper from Wired868 director Lou-Ann Sankar.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

And our Football Festival organisers Indra Ramsingh-Geoffroy, Roger Ekow Watts, Lou-Ann Sankar, Jeffrey Edwards and Arlene Yasmine Paul.

Photo: Wired868.com Football Festival Roger Ekow Watts (far right) is hard at work. Really. He is.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

And, most of all, thanks for the participants who made it a great time.

Photo: Central FC coach and ex-England World Cup defender Terry Fenwick (far right) and Wired868 managing director Lasana Liburd (far left) share a laugh.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)

And for the players who took their own sweet time to leave; don’t worry, there will be a next time.

Photo: Marvin Joseph (far left), Brent Sancho (second from left) and Earl “Mango” Pierre enjoy the lime at the Wired868 Football Festival.
(Courtesy Noel Saldenha/Wired868.com)


Editor’s Note: Persons interested in seeing more photos from the Football Festival can check on Facebook for the Wired868 Page.

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  1. So sad I couldn’t stay and oogle some football heroes!! Looks like it was a fun event!!

  2. Would have been nice to get some video action. Looked like a real good lime though, Thanks Lasana

  3. Noel Saldenha. He still taking pictures. That man is 100 yrs old.

  4. And Lasana Liburd as part of the organising crew

  5. Niceness! Looks like a great time was had!

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