Trinidad and Tobago were forced to settle for second place in Group 5 of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) Girls Under-14 Challenge Series last night after a 2-1 loss to Cuba at the Ato Boldon Stadium in Couva.
The result extends the poor run of form by Soca Warriors teams in both sexes, who are now routinely outside the top four nations in the Caribbean and virtually nonexistent at Concacaf level.
Earlier this month, the Trinidad and Tobago Women’s National Senior Team were eliminated from the Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualifying campaign at the first rung after finishing third in a Caribbean qualifying group at home behind St Kitts and Nevis and the Dominican Republic. And the Men’s National Senior Team are bottom of their Concacaf Nations League group behind Honduras and Martinique.
The Under-14 girls, coached by Marlon Charles, won their opening fixtures against Grenada and Suriname and started brightly enough against Cuba last night. Carissa Cowen put the hosts ahead after just eight minutes.
But Trinidad and Tobago could not hold on as the Spanish-speaking islanders answered with strikes by Dalia Baez and Keila Hernandez in the 31st and 42nd minutes respectively.
The tournament marked the first official occupation of the TTFA’s controversial Home of Football hotel, which was used by the Under-14 Team.
Trinidad and Tobago team: 1.Mikaela Yearwood (GK), 18.Sadiel Antoine (GK), 2.J’eleisha Alexander, 3.Faith Alexander, 4.Jeniceia Benjamin (captain), 5.Angel Berot, 6.Arie Bhagan, 7.Talia Martin, 8.Twinkle Thomas, 9.Breana Smith, 10.Orielle Martin, 11.Miakayla St Clair, 12.Gamie Waldron, 13.Carissa Cowan, 14.Nikita Jackson, 15.Jewel Benjamin-Edmond-King, 16.Akia Morris, 17.Rasheeda Archer.
Head coach: Marlon Charles
CFU Girls U-14 results
(Friday 25 October)
Trinidad and Tobago 10 (Carissa Cowan 14, 35, Nikita Jackson 18, Breana Smith 37, 48, 56, 62, 68, Faith Alexander 67, Talia Martin 41), Grenada 0 at Couva;
Cuba 7, Suriname 0 at Couva;
(Sunday 27 October)
Grenada 0, Cuba 7 at Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva;
Trinidad and Tobago 3 (Breana Smith 21, Talia Martin 46, Gamie Waldron 49 pen), Suriname 0 at Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva;
(Tuesday 29 October)
Suriname v Grenada, 5pm, Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva;
Trinidad and Tobago 1 (Carissa Cowen 8), Cuba 2 (Dalia Baez 31, Keila Hernandez 42) at Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva.