Soca Warriors thump the Bahamas 7-1 as Eve looks to shake off opening draw

Trinidad and Tobago got their first win of the 2026 Fifa World Cup qualifying campaign this evening, and it was an emphatic one.

The Soca Warriors steamrolled The Bahamas 7-1 at the Saint Kitts and Nevis Football Association (SKNFA) Technical Centre in Basseterre to move, temporarily, to the top of Group B.

Trinidad and Tobago Malcolm Shaw (left) had two goals and one assist while his strike partner Reon Moore had one goal and an assist in a 7-1 World Cup qualifying win over the Bahamas in St Kitts on 8 June 2024.
(via TTFA Media)

At present, Trinidad and Tobago have four points from two matches with a goal difference of +6. Grenada host Costa Rica tomorrow at the Kirani James Athletic Stadium in St George’s and, whatever the outcome of that game, the Warriors will at least end the Fifa international match window in first or second place.

Eve could not have played the Bahamas at a better time—and, incidentally, it was the first outing by Fifa’s 200th ranked team in seven months.


But then the Trinidad and Tobago head coach has enough good fortune to suggest he is a praying man.

At his first Gold Cup in 2021, he avoided Cuba in the PlayOffs after Cuba withdrew due to their inability to navigate Covid-19 travel restrictions and the Warriors edged French Guiana on penalties to get to the group stage.

Trinidad and Tobago coach Angus Eve is in his third year at the helm of the Soca Warriors.
Photo: Daniel Prentice/ Wired868

Then, in the 2022-23 Concacaf Nations League, Trinidad and Tobago won promotion to Group A despite finishing second on the field of play—after Nicaragua were penalized for using an illegal player in two matches.

And, in the 2023-24 and 2024-25 Nations League tournaments, Trinidad and Tobago avoided facing Panama and Jamaica respectively, despite being in the same group with both teams.

Today might not have been a good day for the Warriors to face Costa Rica or even Saint Kitts, particularly without star forward Levi Garcia. But the Bahamas? Yes, please.

Just to be sure, though, Trinidad and Tobago started with five defenders on the field—although full backs Alvin Jones and Triston Hodge were allowed to gallop up the flanks like wingers.

The Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Senior team pose before kickoff against the Bahamas in Basseterre, St Kitts on 8 June 2024.
(via TTFA Media)

Eve’s philosophy has often been: to pack his defence and sit deep against superior opponents, while playing on the counter-attack.

And against weaker teams? Well, still keep a solid defensive spine on the field and rely on the quality of your four attackers to eventually win you the match anyway.

It is not a strategy that will satisfy everyone. But, in theory, the logic holds.

Trinidad and Tobago head coach Angus Eve (standing) minds his business during an international friendly against Guyana at the Hasely Crawford Stadium in Port of Spain on 15 May 2024.
Photo: Daniel Prentice/ Wired868

Today, Eve kept his five defenders and at least one defensive midfielder on for the entire 90 minutes and still ran up a lopsided scoreline, with Jones and Hodge featuring prominently at the other end of the field.

Canada-born midfielder Steffen Yeates got his debut as an attacking midfielder alongside Duane Muckette in two of seven changes by Eve since the Grenada draw.

Only captain Aubrey David, his partner in central defence, Justin Garcia, goalkeeper Denzil Smith and forward Reon Moore kept their places.

Trinidad and Tobago defender Justin Garcia looks for a teammate during 2026 World Cup qualifying action against Grenada at the Hasely Crawford Stadium on 5 June 2024.
Photo: Daniel Prentice/ Wired868

It is difficult to gauge the effectiveness of the changes against such weak opponents, But the starting team today certainly got the job done.

In his seven previous games for Trinidad and Tobago, forward Malcolm Shaw’s only international goal came from the penalty spot. Today, he scored twice before limping off—the first off of a Muckette pass in the sixth minute, and the second after a feed from Moore in the 67th minute.

In between, Jones scored from the penalty spot after an overlapping Hodge won a straightforward decision. And Muckette got a double after assists by Garcia and Shaw, with the latter item also involving contributions from Yeates and Moore.

Trinidad and Tobago midfielder Duane Muckette (left) skips past a challenge from Guyana opponent Nicholai Andrews during international friendly action at the Hasely Crawford Stadium in Port of Spain on 15 May 2024.
Photo: Daniel Prentice/ Wired868

Moore got the first item in the second half, with a close-range finish in the 56th minute after Hodge released Yeates down the flank and the latter centred the ball to the goal scorer.

Yet it is worth mentioning that despite Trinidad and Tobago’s control of the match—the Warriors had 80% possession in the first half—the Bahamas still tallied four goal attempts in the first hour, with three of them on target.

Nineteen-year-old midfielder Paul Massey had the best opportunity of the lot with a dipping strike in the 20th minute that needed to be tipped over by goalkeeper Denzil Smith, after Massey pinched the ball from opposing midfielder Andre Rampersad.

Trinidad and Tobago midfielder Andre Rampersad (left) tries to turn away from Grenada attacker Jermaine Francis during 2026 World Cup qualifying action at the Hasely Crawford Stadium on 5 June 2024.
Photo: Daniel Prentice/ Wired868

Even against the Bahamas, then, Trinidad and Tobago were not quite defensively solid.

Are the Warriors unconvincing on both the frontfoot and the backfoot?

It feels like nitpicking to suggest it, after such a one-sided affair. But there will be more testing affairs than today’s, which would help provide an answer.

Eve replaced Shaw, immediately after his goal, with Kevon Woodley and threw in Nathaniel James and Michel Poon-Angeron for good measure for Moore and Muckette.

Trinidad and Tobago forward Reon Moore (right) tries to cross the ball for teammate Duane Muckette during World Cup qualifying action against the Bahamas in St Kitts on 8 June 2024.
(via TTFA Media)

At that stage, Trinidad and Tobago had two defensive midfielders and five defenders on the turf—albeit with license to attack.

In the 76th minute, Eve introduced Real Gill and Dantaye Gilbert, another debutante, for Rampersad and Yeates.

Gill pushed up alongside Woodley and James to give the Warriors a front three for the first time, with Poon-Angeron and Gilbert playing between Jones and Hodge in a midfield four.

Trinidad and Tobago forward Nathaniel James runs at the Guatemala defence during Concacaf Nations League A action at the Hasely Crawford Stadium on 13 October 2023.
Photo: Nicholas Bhajan/ Wired868

In the 84th minute, James got Trinidad and Tobago’ seventh goal with a solo run and right footed finish, after an initial flick from Gilbert. It was the Warriors’ only goal of that period.

And, disappointingly, the Bahamas scored as well.

Substitute Brandon Adderley turned away from Hodge and dribbled past Poon-Angeron before finding 17-year-old Reuben Edgecombe in the Trinidad and Tobago box. David failed to prevent Edgecombe from shooting and, when Smith parried the effort, Wood Julmis was on hand to hit home the consolation item.

Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Senior Team head coach Angus Eve reacts to the action during his team’s Concacaf Nations League A encounter with Guatemala in Port of Spain on 13 October 2023.
Photo: Nicholas Bhajan/ Wired868

Trinidad and Tobago lost the chance to register a clean sheet.

Ironically, Eve could point out that the Bahamas’ item came after he sacrificed a midfielder for an attacker—even though their opponents managed a few sights on goal earlier.

What exactly is the optimum balance for the current Soca Warriors? Are our players really ill-suited for attacking football? Or is the coach projecting his own deficiencies on the team?

Trinidad and Tobago players huddle before kick off against the Bahamas in World Cup qualifying action in St Kitts on 8 June 2024.
(via TTFA Media)

Perhaps it is better to enjoy a comprehensive result for now.

Two teams advance from Group B to the next qualifying round and Trinidad and Tobago occupy one of those spots after the first international match window.

What crisis?

(Squads)

Trinidad and Tobago (3-5-2): 22.Denzil Smith (GK); 5.Josiah Trimmingham, 2.Aubrey David (captain), 17.Justin Garcia; 16.Alvin Jones, 12.Steffen Yeates (15.Dantaye Gilbert 76), 18.Andre Rampersad (10.Real Gill 76), 6.Duane Muckette (11.Michel Poon-Angeron 67), 3.Triston Hodge; 13.Reon Moore (9.Nathaniel James 67), 19.Malcolm Shaw (23.Kevon Woodley 67).

Unused substitutes: 1.Christopher Biggette (GK), 21.Aaron Enill (GK), 4.Daniel Phillips, 7.Ryan Telfer, 8.Noah Powder, 14.Shannon Gomez, 20.Ajani Fortune

Coach: Angus Eve

The Bahamas (5-2-3): 23.Amard Kesean Adderley (GK); 2.Alexiou Cartwright (15.Jordan Cheetham 77), 8.Evelt Julmis, 6.Jean Ryka Tilo (3.Duane Beneby 83), 10.Lesly St Fleur (captain), 4.Jonathan Miller; 7.Quinton Carey (11.Brandon Adderley 64), 5.Michael Massey (19.Reuben Edgecombe 77); 16.William Gardiner, 9.Wood Julmis, 12.Jordin Wilson (13.Nahum Johnson 64).

Unused substitutes: 17.Kai Perez, 18.Deron Ferguson, 20.Daylan Russell.

Coach: Nesly Jean

Referee: Marco Ortiz (Mexico)

Trinidad and Tobago football fans react to the action during 2026 World Cup qualifying action against Grenada at the Hasely Crawford Stadium on 5 June 2024.
Photo: Daniel Prentice/ Wired868

2026 World Cup qualifier

(8 June 2024)

The Bahamas 1 (Wood Julmis 86), Trinidad and Tobago 7 (Malcolm Shaw 6, 66, Alvin Jones 14 pen, Duane Muckette 43, 45, Reon Moore 56, Nathaniel James 84) at Basseterre, Saint Kitts and Nevis.

More from Wired868
“We wanted to right the wrong”; Eve says T&T showed improvement with Bahamas win

Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Senior Team head coach Angus Eve said the Soca Warriors’ 7-1 World Cup qualifying win Read more

Levi, Raymond miss Bahamas clash; Eve hopes to build on 2nd half against Grenada

Trinidad and Tobago will be without star forward Levi Garcia and left back Andre Raymond when they tackle The Bahamas Read more

Eve: We were too open! T&T coach talks tactics, “Showtime” and team chemistry

“We didn’t lose, which is the most important thing—we didn’t lose,” said Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Senior Team head Read more

2026WCQ: Shell-shocked Soca Warriors forced to fight back to hold Grenada 2-2 in POS

Trinidad and Tobago’s hoodoo against the Grenada Men’s National Senior Team continued last night, as the Soca Warriors had to Read more

Woodley, Dantaye in Warriors WCQ team; Eve names 25-man squad

Veteran Morvant Caledonia United forward Kevon “Showtime” Woodley could make his competitive debut for the Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Read more

Spicer’s international debut in limbo; Toronto concerned about T&T call-up

Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Senior Team head coach Angus Eve will almost certainly have to start his 2026 World Read more

Check Also

“We wanted to right the wrong”; Eve says T&T showed improvement with Bahamas win

Trinidad and Tobago Men’s National Senior Team head coach Angus Eve said the Soca Warriors’ …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.