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TTFA claims Fenwick/Fuentes ‘exchange apologies’ after alleged altercation

Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Senior Team head coach Terry Fenwick and press officer Shaun Fuentes appear to have kissed and made up, after a fiery incident this morning, during a press briefing at the Ato Boldon Stadium.

Fenwick, who was preparing to start the briefing, appeared to become enraged at the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) employee when Wired868 journalist Lasana Liburd turned up.

Photo: Trinidad and Tobago National Senior Team head coach Terry Fenwick oversees practice at the Police Barracks in St James on 3 July 2020.
(Copyright Allan V Crane/CA-Images/Wired868)

In the torrent of obscenity, at least three eyewitnesses alleged that Fenwick butted Fuentes at roughly 9am. The pair subsequently conducted the press conference and the controversial English coach answered two questions from Wired868.

Fifa-appointed normalisation committee chairman Robert Hadad, who was in the covered stands, subsequently requested a report on the matter from Fuentes and Defence Force Captain Basil Thompson.

By evening, though, the TTFA issued a statement that the pair had made up after a meeting that also involved Hadad, team manager Adrian Romain and Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith. The release was not sent directly to Wired868.

“The TTFA further advises that the matter was blown out of proportion as head coach Fenwick only chose to express his disapproval of a certain member of the media fraternity being present at a scheduled media briefing,” stated the release, issued by Fuentes, “on the eve of the team’s departure for the Dominican Republic for the upcoming Concacaf World Cup qualifier against Guyana.  

Photo: TTFA media officer Shaun Fuentes (right) talks to Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith during a function at the commissioner’s residence on 5 March 2021.
(Copyright Daniel Prentice/Wired868)

“Apologies were exchanged and Fenwick and Fuentes have since agreed to put the incident behind them and continue the focus on the team’s upcoming assignments in Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico.”

Fenwick and his local-based contingent leave tomorrow for the Dominican Republic, where they will be joined by their overseas-based players. The Soca Warriors play Guyana on 25 March in the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico in Mayaguez on 28 March.

Trinidad and Tobago cannot use any of their Europe-based players in Puerto Rico due to a US travel restriction, which Fenwick admitted caught him unawares this week.

Neither Fuentes, Hadad nor interim general secretary Amiel Mohammed explained why Wired868 was not included on its mailing list up to the time of publication.

The TTFA neither confirmed nor denied Fenwick’s alleged physical attack on Fuentes.

Photo: Trinidad and Tobago football coach Terry Fenwick shouts orders at his players during a friendly match against Orange XI at the St James Police Barracks on 6 March 2021.
(Copyright Daniel Prentice/Wired868)

(Full TTFA statement)

The Trinidad and Tobago Football Association wishes to state that following an incident at the Senior Team training session involving men’s national head coach Terry Fenwick and director of communications and team press officer Shaun Fuentes on Wednesday morning at the Ato Boldon Stadium.

The matter has been addressed at a meeting involving the two individuals, team manager Adrian Romain and the normalisation committee chairman Robert Hadad.

The TTFA further advises that the matter was blown out of proportion as head coach Fenwick only chose to express his disapproval of a certain member of the media fraternity being present at a scheduled media briefing on the eve of the team’s departure for the Dominican Republic for the upcoming Concacaf World Cup qualifier against Guyana.  

Apologies were exchanged and Fenwick and Fuentes have since agreed to put the incident behind them and continue the focus on the team’s upcoming assignments in Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico.

Both Fenwick and Fuentes proceeded to conduct themselves in a professional manner and subsequently hosted the media briefing before the media present at the venue.

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7 comments

  1. Press the reset button….
    The entire country questioned the actions of the United TTFA team during their spay with fifa, and Mr Wallace advanced this suggestion to dampen the negativity from the fifa ban. His detractors responded with cynicism.. I have blasted to pieces the nonsensical responses from our political leaders And our football prostitutes…
    In an earlier article when Mr Liburd presented the views of Angus Eve on the USA 7-0 loss, I went through pains to point out to Mr Liburd the negativity that emanated from his piece, and that such negativity was counter productive to a national effort to qualify for a world Cup, especially after just one friendly practice game.
    Mr Liburd displayed a disturbing stubbornness at that juncture, and proceeded after to promote the views of persons that it is obvious have an issue with the national coach. At this time I want to point out that I am off the firm belief that national institutions should be respected. Messers Liburd, eve, Ferguson, Sancho have been disrespectful right here in wired 868 reports to the national football team. You all have your reasons of which you are entitled, but in the end you must respect the national team and the decisions of the national authority. Isn’t that what we insisted that Wallace and United TTFA do? I have been critical of the minister of sport, and her piss poor performance, but I have not used any power that I think I have to have her removed, or to make her life as minister of sport uncomfortable!
    Football in this country is now a complete circus. Mr Best talks about fixing the problem, and I outlined to him that you don’t fix things at a circus, you go there for a certain type of thrills and entertainment. Mr Liburd has enlisted his services to the management of the big top, and that is your right.
    You all want change, but you don’t want to do it right way.. I’m sorry but all I’m seeing is the continuation of the destructive behaviour that began with Jack, continued under DJW, and reinstated by fifa, Cudjoe and hadad. Specifically to this issue.. I know media supports media, and whilst I’m not sure to whom Fenwick was referring, I’m not surprised by his reaction to what is going on in the media. I and many other Trinidadians thought that eve, Sancho and the other so called experts that were wailing into Fenwick after the USA loss were overdoing the attack on the coach. Mr Liburd and others right here defended that behaviour. Now you reporting Fenwick being upset about a specific media person as though the man mad??? The abuse of power by the media is in a battle with gang violence as the country’s number 1 problem. A large number of reporters in this country have 0 ethics, serve self, and are ignorant of plenty… Yet still they attack citizens and people that serve others with no remorse for those person’s feelings… You in the media always forget that a human being is on the receiving end of your abuse. And your abuse is almost always premeditated!
    Of course in defence of my criticism I would be accused of picking up for terrible Terry, and my response to that is he is the National team coach… We didn’t persecute Dennis Lawrence when he willingly participated in the DJW assault on football, and drove the national team into the doldrums of World football. But we have plenty teeth to bite up Fenwick…
    Press the reset button on all aspects of football including our media….. Imagine a Jamaican media House strikes up a deal to carry local school boy football, but no deal for local professional football, and allyuh in the local media skinning and grinning with the Jamaicans and licking up allyuh own programs, whilst Jamaica soaring ahead of Trinidad in world football… Press d damn reset button…

  2. IS TTFA ON AUTO PILOT AND A TICKING TIME BOMB WHERE ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING IS ACCEPTABLE

    It is with much interest that I read that this issue was blown up out of proportion and that it was resolved after a meeting involving the two parties, the normalisation head, the team manager and the Commissioner of Police. The undermentioned issues are of great interest and ought to be clarified for the understanding of the public in general.

    Firstly, the allegation of a spat between Mr Fenwick and Mr Fuentes over the presence of one particular media person at the media briefing that was to be held begs the question. Whose responsibility is it to manage media relations for and on behalf of the TTFA? Is it Mr Ferwick’s or Mr Fuentes? If the allegation is factual that Mr Fenwick indicated his displeasure at the presence of a particular media person would debarring this person from attending a media briefing of national interest and importance not be considered an infringement of the right of that individual to practice his/her profession? Does anyone legally possess the right to do such?

    This lead me to the next issue, to the best of my recollection, Mr Adrian Romain was never appointed to the post of National senior team manager. The last person to be appointed National Senior team manager is Captain Basil Thompson. Again I do not recall the revocation of this appointment ever being made public yet I see him being listed as compliance manager. The question therefore is who has the authority to make appointments and did they appoint Mr Romain?

    Even more importantly, it is with concern that the presence of Commissioner of Police is noted in reconciliation talks between two employees of the TTFA. While he has previously stated that he is very close to and has been close to the National team for sometime. The following questions must be asked:

    1. What was his role in the meeting?
    2. Is he employed by the TTFA and if so in what capacity?

    Being close to the national team and its affairs does not give anyone the right to an involvement such as what is evident and confirmed by the TTFA release. Is it that anyone making a claim of being close to the national team can feel entitled and should be allowed the same privilege as the Commissioner.

    These issues need to be addressed so that the public would be in a better position to know what is really happening in the TTFA. Otherwise it would be easy for many an assumption to be made about these persons and their respective roles. A comparison can be made similar to de facto directors and/or shadow directors in a company context.

    • Earl Best

      Louis, Experience teaches that in T&T, the effective “law” is what you can get away with, not what is written in “the books.”

      What, yuh trying to throw sand in the people rice? TTFA people getting away with murder fuh years now…

      …which is doubtless why the CoP is there.

    • I don’t need the issues highlighted to be addressed to beget know what is going on in the TTFA… I’m surprised that people that claim to know soooo much about football couldn’t see that this would have been the result of removing a democratically elected executive from office by undemocratic means!
      Nevertheless, I read that Fenwick said he was not participating in the media conference if that person was there…. And this comment highlights what is really wrong in this country… The media could say what they want about people, but people cyar say nutten negative against the media… Reminds me about Patrick Manning and the church… He said I not building any church… The media person said on his program that manning must answer on the church… A young caller to media person show says that he doesn’t understand if Jack say manning building a church and meaning is the PM of its his responsibility to prove he not building the church, it is not Jack responsibility to prove his allegation. The media could write whatever they want about the national football team, and it is not for Angus Eve to prove that his assessment of the team is correct… It is for Fenwick to prove that eve is wrong… Fenwick is the coach, not Ferguson and not eve, but you going by eve and Ferguson to tell the country about what the national team… And then we want the media rights to be respected, but the media doh have no respect for the national team and its coach…. Mr Liburd says that media workers are not supposed to be Wall flowers, but he doesn’t understand that media has a responsibility to not be cow-itch to the persons they report on…..

      • Lasana Liburd

        The TTFA has a Facebook page (their website is closed due to nonpayment of fees). I think you’d find the sort of ‘journalism’ you’d like to read related to the team right there. Wired868 isn’t for everybody and was never meant to be.

        • You can’t don’t and would never know what I want to read because that is my choice.
          You live and you learn Mr Liburd… That’s the continuum.. If you don’t, then…. Well yuh seeing what happening. So it’s up to you… Best of luck with things