The Trinidad and Tobago Pro League’s most dynamic players, utility player Joevin Jones and defender Daneil Cyrus, are both in big trouble professionally after being caught playing minor league football in Carenage.
Jones and Cyrus, who are both 22, were not used by DIRECTV W Connection for the club’s CONCACAF Champions League match away to Houston Dynamo yesterday, which ended in a 2-0 loss.
At present, Jones is the Connection club captain while Cyrus is the team’s vice-captain. The two players represented Trinidad and Tobago at the 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup and are considered the club’s most valuable assets.
A contrite Cyrus admitted that they were guilty as charged.
“That was a mistake from both of us,” Cyrus told Wired868. “We will understand whatever decision they make. I was wrong to go and play there.
“I am just waiting to find out what they are going to do.”
Connection president David John Williams refused to rule out any course of action including dismissal. But he said the club will not reveal its position until tomorrow.
“The club will make a statement tomorrow,” said Williams, who declined the opportunity to make any further comment on the situation.
Jones and Cyrus are likely to be sent to the Connection disciplinary committee to review the infraction. Elsewhere in the Pro League, Central FC attacker Johan Peltier was found guilty of the same violation and was allegedly fined by his coach Terry Fenwick.
It is possible that Jones and Cyrus might face a harsher penalty although, in theory, the disciplinary committee would have the last word.
Fevrier has been Williams’ head coach for all but one of the 14 years since Connection joined the Pro League in 1999. And, together, they made the “Savonetta Boys” the most successful team in Trinidad and Tobago’s professional era.
Tonight, Fevrier and Williams are likely to start a discussion that can shape the club’s immediate future.
Last December, Fevrier took a firm stance after a verbal altercation with 28-year-old goalkeeper Jan-Michael Williams, who was the Trinidad and Tobago and Connection captain at the time. The club chairman backed his coach and Jan-Michael was released despite a MVP performance as Connection won the domestic title in the 2011/12 season.
Jan-Michael joined St Ann’s Rangers for the completion of last season before moving to Central FC for this term.
At 22, Jones and Cyrus both have their best years ahead of them and they are unlikely to be short of suitors on the domestic or international markets. Jones was Connection’s top scorer last season with 17 goals from an advanced midfield position while Cyrus was one of Trinidad and Tobago’s standout performers at the July Gold Cup.
The two players missed Trinidad and Tobago’s recent appearance at the OSN Cup in which the “Soca Warriors” held the United Arab Emirates to a gallant 3-3 draw before losing on penalties and then romped to a 3-1 win over host nation, Saudi Arabia.
Cyrus skipped his flight after an administrative mix-up with the national team manager while Connection asked national team coach Stephen Hart to excuse Jones due to his overwhelming domestic and international duties over the past two years. Connection even gave Jones two weeks off to help him recuperate.
But Jones’ workload included a minor league in his Carenage hometown.
Cyrus and Jones played Champions League football in Port of Spain last Thursday night against Arabe Unidad and then again from 5 pm on Saturday evening against Police FC in the Pro League. Jones scored the lone goal against Police in Couva.
Fevrier allowed his players to leave camp on Saturday night to prepare for their trip to Houston Dynamo on Monday morning. But Cyrus and Jones headed straight to Carenage for their third game in three games at the minor league final, which kicked off at 8 pm. They were on the losing side as Scorpions fell 4-2 to Young Guns on Saturday night.
On Monday afternoon in Houston, Jones supposedly told the Connection technical staff that he was unwell and could not train. Two days later, Fevrier was alerted to the pair’s participation in the minor league competition and immediately dropped them from his squad to face Dynamo.
Tomorrow, an expected trip to the disciplinary committee is likely to decide the short-term relationship of Williams, Fevrier, Jones and Cyrus and the immediate future of W Connection.