The Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Futsal Team face an early end to their 2021 Fifa Futsal World Cup dreams as the Soca Warriors lost 6-2 to the Dominican Republic last night in Concacaf Championship action in Guatemala City, Guatemala.
The Warriors face Guatemala tonight but are unlikely to find things any easier against the host nation and 2008 Concacaf champions. And with two from the three teams advancing to the knockout stage, coach Constantine Konstin’s troops are in trouble.
The Dominican Republic, who are making their first appearance at a Concacaf Futsal tournament, lost their opening Group A match 4-2 to Guatemala on Monday night. The result showed they were not in Guatemala to make up numbers, and forewarned did not mean forearmed for the Warriors, who always trailed and were torched by a Marco Gómez hattrick.
Keston George gave the twin island republic something to cheer, as he contorted his body to head home a perceptive chipped pass from Che Benny, which temporarily cut the deficit to 3-1. And the versatile Jameel Neptune—the only player selected by Konstin with prior Futsal experience—scored to make it 5-2, after a clever dribble past opposing goalkeeper José Pérez.
Trinidad and Tobago goalkeeper Andre Marchan made more than his fair share of saves too. But it was not nearly enough for the Warriors, who wore Joma gear rather than Bol merchandise.
The Dominican Republic might not have been here before but the north Caribbean nation had several players with Futsal experience including a head coach, Carlos Boccicardi, who was once head coach of the Argentina National Futsal side.
The DR’s goalscoring hero, Gómez, plays for La Unión CFS in Spain while another scorer, Guillermo López, and 17-year-old goalkeeper, Pérez, also play in Spain for Laguna FS and CET 10 respectively.
Ricardo Álvarez and Marselle Cestero, who chipped in a goal apiece, are home-based players.
The game was only five minutes old when Gómez sauntered past Trinidad and Tobago captain Sean De Silva near the halfline, en route to open the scoring, and the Dominican Republic never looked back.
There was no qualifying series for the 2021 Concacaf tournament, which meant that tonight’s outing was Konstin’s first competitive game with the men’s squad. Trinidad and Tobago lost both pre-tournament friendlies to Costa Rica: 7-1 and 8-2 respectively.
Defeat tonight would mean the American ends his first stint at the helm of the men’s team—since controversially replacing Clayton ‘JB’ Morris last year—without a positive result.
Trinidad and Tobago need a four goal win over Guatemala to stay alive in the tournament.
Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Futsal Team: 1.Andre Marchan (GK), Kern Caeser (GK), 11.Willis Plaza, 13.Dwight Quintero, 10.Mark Ramdeen, 6.Dylon King, 14.Aaron Lester, 4.Sean De Silva, 8.Jameel Neptune, 12.Keston George, Keron Cummings, 5.Che Benny, 9.Adrian Welch, 7.Darius Olliviera.
Staff: Constantine Konstin (head coach), Paul Decle (assistant coach), Dunstan Williams (goalkeeper coach), Nigel Roberts (manager), Stephen Bernard (equipment manager), Mark Lewis (trainer), Roger Ryan (medic).