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Trinidad and Tobago slip two places in Fifa rankings, plus Wired868 looks at Eve’s 35-man pool

The Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Senior Team dropped two places to 103rd in the latest Fifa rankings released on 31 March 2022, while they remain 11th in the Concacaf region. The Soca Warriors are ranked as the fourth best nation in the Caribbean, behind Jamaica (64th), Curaçao (79th) and Haiti (90th).

Trinidad and Tobago were ranked exactly the same, 103rd in the world and 11th in Concacaf when Angus Eve was hired in June 2021. Eve was lauded for getting the team into the 2021 Gold Cup group stage where he produced a shock goalless draw against defending champions, Mexico.

Photo: Trinidad and Tobago forward Levi Garcia (number 3 n) completes his hattrick against Barbados with a header off a Noah Powder corner kick during international friendly action at the Hasely Crawford Stadium on 25 March 2022.
(Copyright Daniel Prentice/ Wired868)

However, there has not been enough positive activity just yet to move the needle of the Fifa rankings, which prioritise competitive results over those in friendly matches and award additional points based on the rank of teams defeated.

Since Fifa considers a penalty shoot-out to be a drawn contest with the kicks from the mark being merely the tool for deciding which team gets to the next round, Trinidad and Tobago were credited with one competitive win against Montserrat (178th) to go with three draws (French Guiana, Mexico and Guatemala) and a defeat to El Salvador at the Gold Cup.

And after six months without a game, the Warriors lost heavily away to Bolivia (78th) before routing Barbados (163rd) and tying with Guyana (174th) at home.

KFC Munch Pack

A run of wins at the Concacaf Nations League could finally see Trinidad and Tobago return to the top 100 nations in the world, though. The Nations League starts in June with the Warriors competing in the second tier, after being demoted in 2019 under former head coach Dennis Lawrence.

Photo: Guyana forward Tyrell Ondaan (right, foreground) presses Trinidad and Tobago defender Aubrey David during an exhibition match at the Hasely Crawford Stadium on 29 March 2022.
(Copyright Daniel Prentice/ Wired868)

After eight matches in charge, Eve has capped 35 players with some, like Jesse Williams, Mekeil Williams, Ryan Telfer and Reon Moore, appearing in multiple roles.

Eve has used three different goalkeepers, 13 defenders, six different players as holding midfielders, nine attacking midfielders and six different options upfront. He has never used the same backline in successive matches.

Moore, a Defence Force flanker, is the only player to feature in every match during Eve’s tenure—although he started in just two games. Defender Aubrey David, midfielder Neveal Hackshaw and attacker Telfer played in seven games each.

Eve’s Pool (capped players only)

(Tabulated in terms of player position and number of appearances [with starts-substitute appearances-goals])

Goalkeepers: Marvin Phillip [4-0-0*] (Unattached), Nicklas Frenderup [3-0-4*] (Ranheim—Denmark), Adrian Foncette [1-0-5*] (Police FC);

Photo: Trinidad and Tobago goalkeeper Marvin Phillip (centre) punches clear from a Barbados corner kick during international friendly action at the Hasely Crawford Stadium on 25 March 2022.
(Copyright Daniel Prentice/ Wired868)

Defenders: Aubrey David [7-0-0] (Deportivo Saprissa—Costa Rica), Alvin Jones [6-0-0] (Unattached), Mekeil Williams [4-2-0] (Pittsburgh Riverhounds—USA), Jesse Williams [5-0-0] (Pittsburgh Riverhounds—USA), Triston Hodge [5-0-0] (Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC—USA),  Jelani Peters [4-0-0] (Pittsburgh Riverhounds—USA), Justin Garcia [2-2-0] (Defence Force), Ross Russell Jr [2-2-0] (Terminix La Horquetta Rangers), Radanfah Abu Bakr [2-0-0] (Unattached), Kareem Moses [2-0-0] (Vaasan Palloseura—Finland), Jamal Jack [1-0-0] (KFK Knattspyrnufélag—Iceland), Keston Julien [1-0-0] (FC Sheriff Tiraspol—Moldova), Curtis Gonzales [0-1-0] (Defence Force);

Midfielders: Neveal Hackshaw [5-2-0] (Indy Eleven—USA), Noah Powder [5-1-0] (Indy Eleven—USA), Hashim Arcia [2-2-0] (Defence Force), Khaleem Hyland [2-0-0] (Al Batin—Saudi Arabia), Kevon Goddard [1-1-0] (Defence Force), Matthew Woo Ling [0-1-0] (Miami United FC—USA), Molik Khan [0-1-0] (Club Sando FC);

Photo: Trinidad and Tobago substitute Reon Moore (right) dribbles Montserrat defender Dean Mason out of his boots en route to his maiden international goal at the Drv Pnk Stadium in Fort Lauderdale.
T&T won the Concacaf Gold Cup playoff fixture 6-1.
(via Concacaf)

Attacking midfielders: Reon Moore [2-6-4] (Defence Force), Ryan Telfer [5-2-3] (Columbus Crew 2—USA),  Kevin Molino [3-2-2] (Columbus Crew—USA), Andre Fortune II [2-3-0] (Nomme Kalju FC—Estonia), Judah Garcia [4-0-1] (AEK Athens B FC—Greece), Duane Muckette [1-4-0] (Unattached), John-Paul Rochford [0-3-1] (Unattached), Ajani Fortune [1-0-0] (Atlanta United II—USA);

Forwards: Marcus Joseph [3-1-1] (Mohammedan SC—India), Levi Garcia [2-0-4] (AEK Athens FC—Greece), Nicholas Dillon [0-2-2] (Unattached), Isaiah Lee [0-2-0] (Terminix La Horquetta Rangers).

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