Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Senior Team head coach Angus Eve promised to play for three points from 8pm on Monday when the Soca Warriors host the United States in the second game of a two-legged Concacaf Nations League quarterfinal tie at the Hasely Crawford Stadium in Port of Spain.
The United States won the first leg 3-0 in Austin, Texas last night but Eve praised his team for a “tremendous effort” with 10 players—after midfielder Noah Powder was sent off in the 36th minute.
USA had seven shots in the first half, although all were off target. They ended the contest with 26 shots with 16 from inside the Trinidad and Tobago box. The Warriors registered one shot over the 90 minutes and it was wide.
Eve said the early red card thwarted his plans to play “expansive football” in the second half, though.
“In the second half, we wanted to put on more expressive, attacking players—that was the idea,” Eve told the TTFA Media. “Keep the game close [in the] first half and then allow Nathaniel James, Real Gill and these guys to come on and express themselves with Levi [Garcia].
“Unfortunately, the red card totally changed what we wanted and had to do. It was then an exercise in damage management.”
Trinidad and Tobago are without the suspended Powder and Neveal Hackshaw on Monday and Eve replaced them with AC Port of Spain midfielder Duane Muckette and Defence Force defensive midfielder Kevon Goddard.
Terminix La Horquetta Rangers goalkeeper Jabari St Hillaire is also in for US-based goalkeeper Rushon Sandy.
Eve said it should be a different ball game in Port of Spain.
“We want a win—we want to go out on a positive if we have to,” he said. “[…] We want to give ourselves a fighting chance and go out and play more expansive football.”
(Trinidad and Tobago team)
Goalkeepers: Christopher Biggette (Defence Force), Denzil Smith (Pt Fortin Civic), Jabari St Hillaire (TLH Rangers),
Defenders: Aubrey David (Club Sport Cartagines—Costa Rica), Justin Garcia (Defence Force), Andre Raymond (GD Vilar De Perdizes—Portugal), Ross Russell Jr (TLH Rangers), Jesse Williams (Central Valley Fuego—USA), Alvin Jones (Club Sando), Shannon Gomez (San Antonion FC—USA),
Midfielders: Duane Muckette, Michel-Poon Angeron (both AC Port of Spain), Daniel Phillips (St Johnstone FC—Scotland), Kristian Lee Him (IFK Eskilstuna—Sweden), Andre Rampersad (HFX Wanderers—Canada), Kevon Goddard (Defence Force),
Attackers: Kaïlé Auvray (Mount Pleasant—Jamaica), Nathaniel James (Mount Pleasant—Jamaica), Reon Moore (Defence Force), Ryan Telfer (Miami FC—USA), Real Gill (Club Sando), Malcolm Shaw (Atletico Ottawa—Canada), Levi Garcia (AEK Athens—Greece).