The Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Senior Team have been reunited with The Bahamas as both nations were tonight put together in Group C of the second tier of the 2022-23 Concacaf Nations League.
The two League B nations are grouped with Nicaragua and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines in Group C. The winner will be promoted to League A, the top tier of the Concacaf competition while the bottom team will drop to League C.
The Nations League kicks off in June and fixtures are now imminent.
At the top end of the Nations League draw, the Jamaica ‘Reggae Boyz’ were grouped with Mexico and Suriname in Group A of League A while Grenada drew inaugural champions USA, and El Salvador in Group C.
Costa Rica, Panama and Martinique are in Group B and Canada, Honduras and Curaçao are in Group C of the top rung of the Confederation.
Elsewhere in Concacaf’s second tier, Guyana, coached by Jamaal Shabazz, were partnered with Haiti, Bermuda and Montserrat in Group B of League B. And Barbados, led by Russell Latapy, are in Group A of League B alongside Cuba, Guadeloupe and Antigua and Barbuda.
In Concacaf’s third and lowest rung, League C, Trinidad and Tobago coaches Rajesh Latchoo and Stern John will again square off against each other at the helm of Dominica and Anguilla respectively.
Dominica and Anguilla are in Group C of League C along with Saint Lucia. Only one of those three nations will climb up to League B.
Latchoo’s Dominica defeated John’s Anguilla 3-0 during the 2022 Qatar World Cup qualifying series.
Saint Kitts and Nevis, who advanced to the second round of the 2022 World Cup qualifying series at the expense of Trinidad and Tobago, head Group B of League C, which includes Aruba and Saint Martin.
The Soca Warriors were eliminated from the Qatar qualifiers after they failed to defeat the Bahamas, then ranked 201st in the world, in Nassau on 5 June 2021.
Trinidad and Tobago’s costly draw in Nassau led to then coach Terry Fenwick being replaced by current boss Angus Eve. The fact that the Warriors and the Bahamas are in the same sphere is down to a third coach, Dennis Lawrence, who oversaw T&T’s relegation from League A in 2019.
Eve now knows the teams standing in the way of Trinidad and Tobago’s return to the top echelon. Nicaragua, ranked 144th in the world by Fifa but a steady, organised bunch, are the most obvious challenger.
Trinidad and Tobago have never lost to Nicaragua although the two nations have rarely met on the football field. Since their first meeting in 1967, the Warriors have managed two wins and one draw.
The Warriors lost 1-0 in their last meeting with Saint Vincent and the Grenadines—a friendly in 2019. However, there were four wins and one draw before that in their clashes between 2006 and 2016 while Trinidad and Tobago’s overall record against ‘Vincy Heat’ reads eight wins, five losses and one draw.
Trinidad and Tobago and the Bahamas have met just once, and the resulting goalless draw was the only point picked up by the minnows in their entire competition.
Eve’s troops will want to address that soon.
Concacaf Nations League
Group A: Mexico, Jamaica, Suriname;
Group B: Costa Rica, Panama, Martinique;
Group C: Canada, Honduras, Curaçao;
Group D: United States, El Salvador, Grenada.
Group A: Cuba, Guadeloupe, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados;
Group B: Haiti, Bermuda, Guyana, Montserrat;
Group C: Trinidad and Tobago, Nicaragua, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Bahamas;
Group D: Guatemala, French Guiana, Dominican Republic, Belize.
League C (13 teams)
Group A: Bonaire, Turks and Caicos Islands, US Virgin Islands, Sint Maarten,
Group B: Saint Kitts and Nevis, Aruba, Saint Martin,
Group C: Saint Lucia, Dominica, Anguilla;
Group D: Puerto Rico, Cayman Islands, British Virgin Islands.