The Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Under-17 Team could get within 90 minutes of a Peru 2019 FIFA World Youth Championship spot with just two wins from four qualifying matches, which includes fixtures against Bermuda and, possibly, Haiti.
The junior Soca Warriors, ranked 10th in Concacaf in their age group behind regional neighbours like Jamaica, Cuba and Haiti, should not have felt too hard-done by the draw today, which placed Trinidad and Tobago in Group E with Mexico, Jamaica and Bermuda.
Only one team from that quartet will be eliminated at the group stage, which means T&T can get to the knockout stage with just one win.
Whether the inactive junior Soca Warriors can manage even that much is another question entirely. The National Under-17 outfit have not trained since April 2018 while their last international game was on 17 August 2017, when they lost 8-1 to Jamaica at the Concacaf Under-15 Championship.
At present, the Under-17s—who were previously coached by Russell Latapy—do not even have a technical staff in place. The Trinidad and Tobago Football Association’s (TTFA) Board of Directors is expected to discuss their fate in a meeting tomorrow.
TTFA president David John-Williams has not responded to questions on the status of the National Under-17 Team for the past three months.
Today’s Concacaf draw saw the confederation split in two with 19 nations competing in a qualifying round from 16 March while the top 16 seeded youth teams enter at the final stage from 1 May.
The four group winners from the qualifying round advance to the knockout stage of the Concacaf Championship along with 12 from the 16 teams in the final round. And the four semifinalists qualify automatically for the Peru Under-17 World Cup.
Trinidad and Tobago open their campaign against Bermuda on 1 May at the IMG Academy campus in Bradenton, Florida while they tackle Jamaica and Mexico on 3 and 5 May respectively.
One win from their three group matches will see T&T pitted against the Group G runner-up, which is likely to be either Haiti or El Salvador. A second triumph could put the junior Soca Warriors into the quarterfinals where they could face Mexico again with a World Cup place on the line.
If Trinidad and Tobago finish as Group E runners-up—which would require a result against Jamaica—they could end up challenging Honduras for a World Cup place instead at the Round of Eight.
The TTFA Board should rule tomorrow if the Under-17 Team will get a chance to chase their World Cup dreams at all.
At present, the John-Williams-led football body does not have a technical committee or a technical director—the latter, Anton Corneal, downed tools last month due to broken financial promises from the TTFA—while several national coaches are unpaid.
Warning: Undefined variable $userid in /www/wired868_759/public/wp-content/plugins/user-photo/user-photo.php on line 114
Fear but if we keep laird bk what will change
Easy Marvin Raeburn we are just trouble shooting here based on the situation that we are in. I believe we are all on the same page but we can only make suggestion while we troubleshoot.
What do we expect to accomplish with stupidity like that
I like to think logically… our 1st game is 1st May [9 weeks away] Based on time TTFA can – 1. Do Zonal U17 trials in [2 weeks] [East, North, South/Central, Tobago] ensuring guys have pedigree, US Visas, SSFL experience, possible Tour [Club or Country in 2017 or 18…some Clubs/Zones went USA/Canada/Europe] 2. Selected players added to U15 pool currently in training [5 weeks training] 3. April 15th select team from best of U17 & U15 to represent [2 weeks team preparation] Not ideal but 9 weeks [2+5+2] for good chance to find quality to win 2 games and progress further.
But, its not true that the U15 going in the u17’s place? Well so i’ve heard!
It may be true but I still think there is enough time for a few quality U17 players to replace U15 players! 9 weeks away [to get fit] they at least deserve that chance!
Nicholas Lochan I agree.
Nicholas Lochan every situation is not ideal at this time. SSFL finished 2 to 3 months ago. Choose from that pool together with the U-17 from last March/April add a few of the U-15 players presently in training, take 3 weeks to finalize a 25 and finalize the team after a couple more week to train for a month before the qualifiers.
Nicholas Griffith there is no way you can send a U15 team to a U17 tournament they will be mauled….!!! Your sources has to be incorrect.
Malik Johnson you are quite right. There’s a reason why the tournament is not ‘open’. Just got to be practical about all of this. U-17 is U-17…u-15 is u-15.
Malik Johnson Let hope and wait and see. I also agree with you tho!
Nicholas Griffith Malik Johnson Nicholas Lochan we are all on the same page hoping for the best of a not so ideal situation.
God speed to our youths.
True. With our talent and 9 weeks… I still think we stand a chance to progress if the best effort is put forward
Nicholas Lochan very sensible practical and doable approach but this situation is so reminiscent of the U-20 situation last year…so thinking ahead which Youth tournament do we have coming up that we should try to avoid a 3-peat? I’m guessing the U-23 team for Olympic Qualifiers??? Lasana am I to right?
Yes. U23 Olympic Qualifiers come up in July I believe. Use the U20’s [with a few additions] UEFA teams use their U21 Championship teams and just add a few players
Nicholas Lochan Thanks hopefully if we start asking questions about prep from now the TTFA might not wait until June to call a meeting to discuss team technical staff etc.
Brian Springer yes. Men’s and women’s. That’s next.
The under-15 boys play in August but as ppl have pointed out, that’s the only team under the TTFA that actually trains regularly.
Incidentally it is almost entirely made of past and present Connection employees.
I think there’s a good chance for us to qualify. But it will require a very thorough plan. Think i said the one word most coaches don’t understand plan ?.
A 2 month periodisation plan can easily work here.
With our talent? Vs Mexico and Jamaica? Get real nah ppl.
Kion S Williams against Bermuda? Our talent should get us at least to the next round.
Same squad, same coach + no training
…and we have done next to nothing to help this group since then.
Kion S Williams I see your point of view. I guess they’ll be better prepared this time since they had a year to play SSFL and youth Pro League……
Look at it this way…most ssfl teams realise July is too late to prepare for a schoolboy league starting in September. Far less an international team doing that and expecting miracles. Further, due to the licks this team get in the past, 1 goal and they will start to panic if they haven’t been getting some mental conditioning during all this time and game preparation as to how to react in those situations. 16 year old boys will start to put their head down and point fingers cause emotions already high during puberty.
Kion S Williams my response was very sarcastic, especially with regards to the SSFL. I was eluding to the fact that our leagues do a horrible job preparing our players. I’m trying to be optimistic here and not step on any toes by opening my mouth but you’re making that hard for me to do ??
Kion S Williams with regards to SSFL preparation time ain’t the major problem.
Kion some SSFL teams have already started preparing. And I don’t think there is a single top flight school that isn’t training at least four months before competition starts.
And that pre season training includes games against teams of the caliber that they would meet in competition.
The average SSFL top flight team is far more professional than the TTFA.
Yes but i believe four months is definitely too long for pre-season training. Sounds like ‘burnout’.
For SSFL that is.
Or for any team.
Timothy Rochford yes it definitely is. Not withstanding these same players also play in the youth pro league. They train for months and when competition start run as though they have bricks on their feet. Aye i wasn’t suppose to say that ?
again preperation time isn’t the biggest issue its proper planning. Unlike the girls and women who need alot of prep time that’s another story ?
Lasana Liburd didn’t know any SSFL teams started preparing this early. That’s interesting news.
Check around after carnival
Trey Hart not all SSFL players play in youth Pro League… Would be nice if they all played there or in the Republic Cup.
Brian Jordan that may be true for a minority. Or unless these same SSFL coaches push that agenda. But if you’re not playing any competitive football until its time for SSFL you’re definitely hurting your development and any coach allowing that should be nowhere near youth football.
The teams that win would usually have players who play year round. The other teams have students who can play some football.
Kion S Williams relating to the topic of players who can compete at the national level that’s a minority. Seems like we forgot the topic at hand lol
Kion S Williams wouldnt disagree but do you have any real stats on this?
Brian Jordan but there a core of talent that you can pull from that pool
Timothy Rochford absolutely
I think we do miss the gems from villages who are not in a pro league team, playing overseas, or playing in the ssfl. Over the years, I’ve noted our scouting system is deficient in that regard.
Brian Jordan that’s not gems that’s raw unrefined talent. That should be the job of clubs to scout for not national teams.
Trey Hart I’ve seen gems who are being refined in local coaching schools, or others who have gone away to live overseas but who were in younger national teams… but that’s my experience.
Brian Jordan exactly the clubs can refine them, if you’re not playing at a high division you can’t expect national coaches to pick you. But for the overseas players that’s a different story which is hard to track since there’s no system in place.
Trey.. Case in point.. many of our guys didn’t play Pro League when we finished top 2 or went to national intercol finals at Benedict’s, right Dexter Cyrus??
What year was that? Where are those same players now?
Trey Hart this year and the next.. https://wired868.com/2014/12/05/tekay-that-mucurapo-east-edges-benedicts-to-intercol-title/
Dexter Cyrus any thoughts?
Brian Jordan are you saying those players deserved national team spots because of y’all accomplishments?
Trey Hart nope. Follows earlier conversation that successful SSFL teams must have majority Pro League players. BTW, a couple of these kids probably should have made a national team too.
For example, Anthony Herbert was national under 17 went away and hasn’t been called up or heard from since. Goalkeeper, Jamari Warrick was called up for national under 20. Hasn’t been seen on national scene since. Couple players from small villages probably should have gotten called up but didn’t. It really speaks to my bigger point that scouting isn’t as comprehensive as it should, or could be.
Trey Hart …we dont hav 2 mths
Brian Jordan but don’t you think if they played in youth pro league levels they would’ve been seen more?
Dexter Cyrus first game is in 9 weeks not so?
Which is sad Trey Hart. There are other leagues where players can be scouted.
Trey Hart ….i think its mid March
Dexter Cyrus the draw this week put them in May.
Yea thankfully Dexter Cyrus we have more time.
Trey Hart again, not all players can pay to travel to a Pro League team. Some players have academic lessons on same day as Pro League.. there are many other reasons they can play pro league. Think most of us are saying this shouldn’t preclude them from making it into a national squad for training and ultimately selection
Brian Jordan i get what you’re saying but look at this from a coaches and physiological perspective. Am I to go with a player who is less prepared physically or should i choose a player that is?
Brian Jordan i know there are multitude of reasons why players can’t play pro league, but if that’s the highest level that suppose to offer players the highest level of competition i.e. the greatest physiological adaptations how could i go with a player that does not have that physiological experience. This is far beyond talent and thats my point about raw products. Most players are too raw and by going for players in a lower division or who have lower competitive minutes makes it even worse.
Trey Hart as a coach, I look at it from both sides, we have to improve scouting, and we have to improve the national youth league to allow for greater participation from kids in the countryside, both in Trinidad & in Tobago.
In the ideal of circumstances where there are proper support structures in place.. then we can use the Youth Proleague as a talent pool and choise the best players from there…
In the instance where you hav unseen and untapped talent in the rural areas …that no one has immediate viewing access.. then how are we to harness this talent….
Forget making the comparisons of what works inside the box and in other countries…
Tap in to what will work in Trinidad and Tobago…
Any nook or cranny that you can find talent…giv the kid a shot…
Allow him access to the National training session at least…
From there you will be better able to make a clear decision…
Trinidad is to small to furthur deplete your talent pool by choosing only from a particular group of players….thats madness?
Dexter Cyrus how much time do national team coaches have to work with players?
Brian Jordan what say you Kerry Andel Lynch ?
Trey Hart ….Trinidad National Coaches never have enough time to prepare a team…which is a recurring decimal since Columbus started coaching the Carib and Arawaks ?
Dexter Cyrus so how could you expect these coaches to find this same ‘rural talent’ and refined them in time for competition?
Brian Jordan and Timothy Rochford, if you train for four months and play for three that means you’re playing football for seven months or the year. Why burn out?
It’s not as if you’re spending the whole four months sprinting. You’re doing different types of training.
Can you tell any top football country in the world where their youngsters spend less than seven months playing football?
I can almost guarantee that they do more and not less.
Lasana Liburd I just didn’t know SSFL teams started preparation this early.
Dexter Cyrus this has nothing to do with any other country. This is a simple physiological principle about training adaptations and preparation. Lets not even discuss how much coaches lack in their understanding of that but as i said a player that has less competitive playing time at a high intensity can never be more prepared than a player that has more.
Trey Hart we are saying do simple things like give coaches more time, improve scouting, get better youth league in place, etc. The status quo isn’t good enough to yield consistently good results..
Brian Jordan oh yea for sure I’m not arguing that point. Just fed up of hearing coaches say that their players should be on a national team when they’re playing only in SSFL or in a low youth league. Sorry for my rant ??
Trey Hart when the system is helter skelter, it makes these claims more legitimatein some eople’s eyes. Level the playing field, and
objective evaluations become much easier
Brian Jordan all I’m saying is that clubs need to do more to level the playing field. Don’t blame national coaches only.
Trey Hart yep, the entire system is wonky man
Brian Jordan when I was in school, preparation started in April. That was over two decades ago. Absolutely nothing new.
Lasana Liburd Thought you meant now, as in February. BTW, most teams in South start in June or thereabouts..
Brian Jordan, hasn’t Presentation College (San Fernando) started screening already for 2020?
Lasana Liburd Good question. Thought we were discussing training specifically. Switched up on me. Touche
Brian Jordan I never specified the type of training. You’re assuming training for competition I think. But training is for development too. I’m not talking about spending five months of fitness work.
In the US system…most kids are playing for clubs in fall the high school in spring for Colleges…ball in fall…. training in spring…after intercol finish in Trini….is every man for himself….no continuity….this is where an academy for the best players in the down season prepares players for tournaments. In any event this is all null and void because David John Williams will not prepare the squad and uses his money for his hotel and NONE of us know how to get this f**k moved
Lasana Liburd so you were specifically thinking screening, which most teams do. Gotcha
Brian Jordan I won’t say screening alone. You can develop technique, work on football IQ… A broad range of things.
Besides how can schools be accused of overworking players when those some players are involved in the RBNYL competition or Youth Pro League from March to June? And that’s not counting pre-season for that competition.
Why would people think training for three months and not playing prep matches prepares a team sufficiently? Training is about replicating game situations as much as possible…..replicate situations and intensity but it’s still a poor substitute for actually playing 80 minutes of an actual game. Yet we’re discussing a team that is not even or potentially going to be in training….not sure we understanding the depths of how far back we are…..in that assigned group we are favorites to be dead last in that group……based on current circumstances
Lasana Liburd don’t believe schools today overwork any player, not by any stretch of the imagination.
Lasana Liburd youths playing with club and going to school, national training and school, school training and school. If you are going into a league for 3 months or more then 2 mths is adequate as there will be ongoing training between games. Training for world cup qualifiers however should be an ongoing training with a pool of player 35 to 40 players. That being said, it is not impossible to use this nine weeks to properly prepare the team which I believe includes the two weeks of Easter vacation
Timothy Rochford isn’t the tournament occurring during exams as well?
Phew! There we go with that mental. How do we address that for the kids?
Timothy Rochford hmmm
it seems 2 me dat we only have 2 national teams the Men Senior team n the Boys U14 cus these is the only team training
Yep you’re right
The first paragraph excites until you reach the part about oh btw, we haven’t been training. Lol