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Warriors hold off Martinique to end tour without conceding; Foncette gets maiden clean sheet

The Trinidad and Tobago National Senior Team ended their two-match Caribbean tour with a solid showing in Martinique today, coming away with a goalless draw against the host nation—who were without their Europe-based players—at the Stade Pierre Aliker in Fort-de-France.

The result ensured that, after their 1-0 win over Guadeloupe on Friday in Guadeloupe, coach Dennis Lawrence’s troops ended their Caribbean adventure without conceding.

Photo: Trinidad and Tobago coach Dennis Lawrence (centre) gives instructions to team captain Khaleem Hyland (left) and winger Levi Garcia during 2018 World Cup qualifying action at the Ato Boldon Stadium on 10 October, 2017.
(Courtesy Chevaughn Christopher/Wired868)

Lawrence has found wins hard to come by since he succeeded Belgian Tom Saintfiet as national head coach. The Warriors managed just four victories—against Barbados, Panama, the United States and Guadeloupe—in 16 games under the lanky former World Cup 2006 player.

And apart from a wayward 37th minute Levi Garcia header off a fine cross from overlapping left-back Mekeil Williams, Trinidad and Tobago rarely looked capable of conjuring a scoring chance, let alone taking one.

Yet there were obvious positives too, as the Warriors displayed good organisation, moved the ball quickly and did not shy away from the physical battles. The defensive square of stoppers Daneil Cyrus and Curtis Gonzales and midfielders Leston Paul and Neveal Hackshaw showed good patience and judgement in possession too to keep the ball away from the hosts for much of the first half.

The Warriors tired a bit in the second half but never lost shape or purpose and Trinidad and Tobago goalkeeper Adrian Foncette was not stretched, managing a personal milestone of a debut clean sheet in his 11th senior appearance.

The lone bad note was a knock to defender Triston Hodge, who was replaced in obvious pain after 20 minutes and later seen with heavy icing on his right shin.

Photo: Trinidad and Tobago goalkeeper Adrian Foncette (left) reaches for the ball while defenders Maurice Ford (centre) and Radanfah Abu Bakr look on during 2017 Gold Cup play-off action against Haiti at the Ato Boldon Stadium in Couva.
(Courtesy Chevaughn Christopher/Wired868)

(Team)

Trinidad and Tobago (4-2-3-1): 22.Adrian Foncette (GK); 16.Alvin Jones, 26.Daniel Cyrus, 15.Curtis Gonzales, 18.Triston Hodge (17.Mekeil Williams 20), 23.Leston Paul, 13.Neveal Hackshaw (19.Kevan George 77), 7.Nathan Lewis (10.Marcus Joseph 79), 8.Khaleem Hyland (captain) (20.Nathaniel Garcia 68), 3.Joevin Jones, 11.Levi Garcia,

Substitutes: 1.Marvin Phillip (GK), 2.Kareem Moses, 9.Akeem Roach, 12.Reon Moore, 14.Hashim Arcia.

Coach: Dennis Lawrence

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45 comments

  1. Met Gally, Wilfred cave and 2 others in Panorama..They were recalling that club sides in T’dad used to handle these teams fro G’loupe/Martinique.

  2. Guerra is ah top notch player he must never be left out a Trinidad and Tobago 11, him and Boucard.

  3. Does Martinique and Guadeloupe have much foreign based players? Historically those 2 teams are real hard to beat and Haiti is even more difficult for Soca Warriors!!

    • Lasana Liburd

      When Martinique defeated T&T under Hart, they had about six or seven Europe-based players including a former England Premiership player. So yep. They are tapping into their overseas talent now too and they would have been stronger with them in the side.

      • So in other words the result vs Martinique isn’t ‘positive’. An excuse could be that our Pro League hasn’t started yet.

        • Lasana Liburd

          That’s your interpretation. It is a fact that Martinique were not at full strength since they didn’t send for the Europe-based players for whatever reason. As for the Pro League, we already pointed out that the Pro League hasn’t started and we carried quotes from Dennis Lawrence explaining the implications of that.
          We had four Pro League players in the starting team against Martinique btw.

  4. Lara stadium not yet accredited…
    Monday 26th March, 2018
    Donstan Bonn
    TEN months after its opening, the Brian Lara Cricket Academy is still not accredited to host international games. Princes Town Member of Parliament Barry Padarath has described the situation as one of shame and disgrace.
    “When I raised the question recently with acting Minister of Sports Dr Nyan Gadsby-Dolly, her response was that the stadium did not have international accreditation and that they were in the process of having it done. However, shortly after its opening last year when I asked substantive minister Darryl Smith a similar question he gave the assurance that the facility will receive accreditation by June, as it was a simple process.”

  5. Thanks Andy Morris
    Sterling Manchouck Harmon Lucas

  6. Nigel Myers, 11v11 let us down… We beat Martinique at that ground in 2010. Hughtun Hector scored the game winner.

    • Yeh, Latapy was de coach. Cyrus, Joevin, and Marvin Phillip played in that game. The sad thing was that was de only goal we scored in that final round of de Digicel Cup. Lost 2-0 to Cuba and 1-0 to Grenada.

  7. So with KM out for most if not the rest of the yr the coach still doesn’t see it fit to bring in Ataulla Guerra into the team smh

  8. I think the entire Martinique squad was local-based except for Jordy Delem of the Seattle Sounders.

  9. One thing I didn’t like was the needless long balls. Unless they felt it was necessary because of the poor surface. But then again, it looked very similar to the Ato Boldon. From my perspective T&T was in charge of the first half, but Martinique came alive in the second half and created quite a few opportunities. Joevin Jones was guilty of missing a sitter around the 55th minute.

    • I missed Joevin’s sitter then. The best chance I saw came from Levi. It definitely looked like we were going long early from the back. But I’d be realistic and say we don’t have the most technical midfielders at present. Hopefully that will change with time.

    • One of the reasons why Martinique went into a higher gear in the second half was because of the introduction of Kévin Parsemain, who is their all-time leading goalscorer.

  10. since 1979 wow…they have a buck?