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Trinidad and Tobago’s Senior Women’s footballers have been engaging in double training sessions daily during their live-in training camp at the Lindsay Lyons Sports Complex in Houston.

T&T head coach Richard Hood described the camp as satisfactory so far with fifteen members his 21-player squad involved in the camp so far. Five players are scheduled to arrive in Houston on Friday including Shallette Alexander, Karyn Forbes, Khadidra Debesette, Victoria Swift and Kayla Taylor. France-based professional Mariah Shade will join the camp on Monday.

“The camp has gone well so far. The girls have been in good spirits for the most part and have been working hard throughout,” Hood told TTFA Media on Thursday.

“We’ve done double sessions Monday to Wednesday and we have been pushing the players during the sessions and they have been responding quite well.”

The team’s technical staff has been joined by physiotherapist Matthew Vasquez and conditioning coach Derrick Jonkins.

WOMEN TRAINING2

“They have both been working hard to get the girls in proper shape before the tournament starts. The conditions are a bit cold at the moment and is expected to get colder later in the week but everyone has coped well so far.

“We have a couple players who are being treated for niggling injuries but they are expected to be fit and ready for the tournament,” Hood added.

T&T will play a training match against an ECNL team at the Lindsay Lyons Sports Complex on Sunday.

“This game will give us a chance to test the fitness level of the individuals and the team as it relates to our game plan and to measure the collective understanding of the unit in terms of how we function in the three periods of the game – when we are in possession, when in defence and when we are in transition,” Hood stated.

T&T will play its opening game of the tournament against Guatemala on February 11th at the BBVA Compass Stadium. T&T will then face Canada on February 14th and Guyana on February 16th. The top two teams in the group will advance to the semi finals with the two finalists moving onto the Rio 2016 Olympics.

The tournament commences on February 10th with Mexico facing Puerto Rico and the United States taking on Costa Rica on in a double header at the Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas.

On Monday 1st February, DIRECTV WConnection FC and the Academy of Sport – High Performance Center of the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Barbados Campus signed a historic Memorandum of Understanding.

This agreement will see the joint establishment and implementation of various programs and projects aimed at the development of football and its supporting areas for the mutual benefit of both parties, and by extension the Caribbean.

Key areas of the MOU included development of the Player, Administrator, and Coach. The Academy of Sport currently fields the UWI Blackbirds Football Club which participates in the Barbadian Premier League and will benefit directly from the partnership.

The signing ceremony, which took place at the Cave Hill Campus was attended by DIRECTV WConnection’s Board Chairman Mr. David Martin, who signed on the club’s behalf. Parties of note included Pro Vice Chancellor and Principal Professor Eudine Barriteau, Academy of Sport Head Mrs. Amanda Reifer and Mr. Roland Butcher, Head Coach of the Academy of Sport. Commenting on the new partnership, Mr. Martin stated that he was a believer in progress on the field as well as through the growth of outside relations which the MOU facilitates.

He continued by saying that “Our mission statement of the club speaks to the harnessing of young talent and we have never restricted ourselves to the Trinidad and Tobago market. We have coaches and players from all across the Caribbean…”

Club CEO Ms. Renee John-Williams whilst unable to attend the signing ceremony expressed her satisfaction with the formation of the partnership as she stressed the significance of networking and relationship building for the growth and development of local and Caribbean football.

“Over the last 17 years, our organization has experienced great successes both on field and off field, much of which can be attributed to the importance we have placed on building regional and international partnerships from a business perspective. The relationship that we have sought to build with the University broadens our reach across the Caribbean with an aim to not only raise the standard of football across the region, but to benefit from a more educated approach to its management and administration. Sports administration and education is now a growing field in the Caribbean…it has opened avenues for our athletes to continue their careers…”

Pro Vice Chancellor Barriteau stated that for as long as she could remember, Trinidad and Tobago had excelled in football and it was an opening for the further development of the student footballers’ skills.

The club also made mention of further partnerships at the local level to be announced at a later date. 

Trinidad and Tobago’s National Futsal team will face Honduras in playoff to secure a place in the CONCACAF Final round of qualification for the 2016 FIFA Futsal World Cup in Colombia.

The playoff will take place in Costa Rica in May after both teams finished third in their respective qualifying zones. T&T defeated Guadeloupe 5-4 in the Caribbean third place encounter in January.

The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) today announced that Costa Rica will host the  CONCACAF Futsal Championship 2016, to be played May 8-15 in San Jose. In confirming the site of the Championship, CONCACAF also announced the official draw, scheduled for March 16.

With qualifiers recently completed in the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) and the Central American Football Union (UNCAF), six of the eight participating sides have now been determined, with the final two spots to be decided by two play-in series at the tournament site in the days leading up to the championship.

As host country, Costa Rica is automatically qualified as one of the three representatives of UNCAF. Central America qualifying champion Guatemala and silver medalist Panama have also qualified directly to the Championship.

From North America, Mexico was awarded an automatic spot by virtue of being the highest placed North American team from the 2012 Championship, while the second North American spot will be decided by a play-in contested between Canada and the United States.

From the CFU, regional champion Cuba and runner-up Curacao have qualified, while Trinidad & Tobago — third-place finisher of the CFU Futsal Qualifying-Championship – also secured a trip to Costa Rica, where it will attempt to best UNCAF Futsal Qualifying Championship third-place holder Honduras for a berth in the championship round.

Each pairing of nations in the dual play-in series will dispute two matches against one another — one on the 5th of May and one more the following day on the 6th — with the teams emerging victorious by virtue of aggregate goals rounding out the field for the tournament.

At the official draw in March, the eight qualified Participating Member Associations will be divided in two groups of four. At the championship, the winner and second-place team from each group will qualify to the semifinals of the Championship, and the FIFA Futsal World Cup Colombia 2016.

The winners of the semifinals will advance to the final and the two losing semifinalists will compete in the third-place match. In addition to crowning the Confederation’s champion in this discipline, the CONCACAF Futsal Championship will qualify four teams to the FIFA Futsal World Cup, to be played in Colombia later this year.

Costa Rica is the defending champion of the CONCACAF Futsal Championship, having won the title in Guatemala in July 2012.

CONCACAF Futsal Championship Costa Rica 2016

Date: May 8-15, 2016

Site: Costa Rica

Teams: 8

Caribbean Football Union (2 ½)

Central American Football Union (3 ½)

North America (2)

Number of teams to qualify for the World Cup: 4

Format: Eight (8) Participating Member Associations are divided into two (2) groups (A, B) of four (4) teams each for the group stage. After the group stage, the winner and second-place team from each group will qualify to the semifinals and the FIFA Futsal World Cup. The winner of each semifinal match advances to the final and the two losing semifinalists will reach the third-place match.

The Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee (TTOC) has launched a long-term athlete development programme as part of its “#10golds2024” initiative.

The programme will target the country’s national sporting organisations in a bid to help them with their learning and training in order to work towards the TTOC’s goal of winning 10 Olympic gold medals by 2024.

It will also be mainly aimed at youngsters, aged nine to 16, who may be identified as future Olympians.

The scheme has been developed along with the Caribbean Association of National Olympic Committees and the Bahamas, Suriname, Haiti, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and the British Virgin Islands.

“We feel proud that we can be the leaders in the Caribbean on this project,” TTOC secretary general Annette Knott said.

“But of course it is a programme that involves everybody and we look forward to letting the public and the most important stakeholders know that long term athlete development is the only way to have sustained level of athlete performance.”

The TTOC has also launched an in-house marketing department which will look after several aspects within the organisation including branding, new business and commercial development.

It will be tasked with coming up with new ideas and approaches to support the vision of the “#10golds2024” programme.

“This department will drive the TTOC’s business and commercial agenda, growth and value strategy,” TTOC President Brian Lewis said.

“We are at a critical juncture, and it is of even greater importance for us to achieve financial independence and strength for the TTOC while at the same time maintaining the TTOC’s identity and not compromising its core Olympic values and ideals.

“It’s one thing to understand what your brand stands for but it matters not unless you protect your brand.

“Defending your rights and what you stand for is central to what the Olympic movement is all about.” 

W Connection were in top form on Sunday, annihilating North East Stars 7-0 in a lopsided affair at the Larry Gomes Stadium, and in the process eclipsing a 7-1 performance they achieved against Point Fortin Civic on January 19.

A double each from 19-year-old Shannon Gomez and 21-year-old Jomal Williams, and one each from 21-year-old Dimitrie Apai, veteran Andre Toussaint and 19-year-old Aikim Andrews ensured coach Stuart Charles-Fevrier’s side stacked up on confidence ahead of the two-week Carnival break with their biggest win margin of the season.

The win improved Connection's hold on third place on the Digicel Pro League 2015/16 standings with 29 points, three points off leaders Defence Force (32 points) and one point behind second-place and defending champions Central FC (31 points). While North East Stars, now winless in their last four outings, remain fifth with 22 points—one less than fourth-place San Juan Jabloteh (23 points).

Conversely, Sunday's result was the Sangre Grande based North East Stars biggest league defeat of the season since a 6-1 loss to Defence Force on December 19 under previous coach Roland Clarke.

Defence Force holds the biggest league win of the season with an 8-0 victory over Morvant Caledonia United on January 8, equalling North East Stars result over Super League side Siparia Spurs in the preliminary round of this season’s Toyota Classic on November 4, 2015.

Although now led by two-time Defence Force Pro League-winning coach Ross Russell and former Dundee United and 2006 Trinidad and Tobago attacker Collin Samuel as assistant coach, North East Stars failed to put up resistance against the side that defeated them 3-0 in both Round One of the league and in the quarter-final round of the Toyota Classic this season.

Jomal Williams fired the Savonetta Boys ahead on 14 minutes by beating Stars’ second choice goalie Shane Mattis from inside the area, while regular number one Cleon John looked on from the bench.

There was no let-up from the visitors and Surinamese international forward Apai made it 2-0 four minutes later when he fired in a Kurt Frederick cross at the back post.

Connection’s quickness in the attacking third – even without the services of Shahdon Winchester and Neil Benjamin, who are sidelined due to injury along with first choice goalie Julani Archibald – produced three more goals before the break after proving too much for the North East Stars defence.

Shannon Gomez snatched a double – his first Connection goals of the season – before the half, first firing in a Dwight Quintero feed following a flowing move by Connection on 31 minutes, then rounded defender Glenton Wolfe before slotting the ball past the Stars’ goalie in stoppage-time of the first half for a 5-0 score.

Gomez also had an assist when his cross in the 37th minute was met by Toussaint ahead of Mattis with a volley into the North East Stars net.

The veteran playmaker Toussaint taking goal tally to six goals in all competitions this season, inclusive of a goal in each of the three games against North East Stars.  

Mattis was hung out to dry again by his defence after producing two saves to deny Jomal, who wrapped up his double in the 65th minute.

St. Lucia international fullback Frederick dispatched another brilliant cross beyond Mattis and Jomal, for his 10th league goal and 15th in all competitions this season, did well to get into position to head into the net for a 6-0 score.

Two minutes later Jomal and Gomez later linked up in the box before the latter provided a pass that allowed 19-year-old substitute Aikim Andrews to blast the ball into Mattis’ top corner to wrap up the 7-0 dominance.

Another Connection substitute, Jamal Charles, who replaced forward Dwight Quintero just over the hour mark, was denied by Mattis on his first touch after a defence-splitting pass from Toussaint on 77 minutes.

However Mattis and his North East Stars teammates will have the next two weeks, with the help of their coaching staff and maybe the mid-season transfer window (January 29 – February 26) to try prepare for their next game against leaders Defence Force when action resumes on the weekend of February 12-14, while W Connection will face San Juan Jabloteh.

Digicel Pro League 2015/16
Full Round Two Match Day Six results
Friday 29 January 2016
Morvant Caledonia United 0 vs Club Sando 1 (Devon Modeste 65’); at Ato Boldon Stadium

Central FC 3 (Marcus Joseph 52’, Darren Mitchell 55’, Own Goal 67’) vs Police FC 0; at Ato Boldon Stadium

Point Fortin Civic 0 vs Defence Force 0; at Mahaica Oval

Saturday 30 January 2016
St. Ann’s Rangers 2 (Keron Cornwall 48', Kadeem Hutchinson 63') vs San Juan Jabloteh 3 (Sean Bonval 6’, Jamal Gay 15’, Adrian Reid 39' penalty); at Larry Gomes Stadium

Sunday 31 January 2016
North East Stars 0 vs W Connection 7 (Jomal Williams 14’, 65’, Dimitrie Apai 18’, Shannon Gomez 31’, 45’+2, Andre Tooussaint 37’, Aikim Andrews 67’); at Larry Gomes Stadium

Next Match Day
Round Two Match Day Seven
February 12-14
Police FC vs Club Sando
San Juan Jabloteh vs W Connection
Central FC vs Morvant Caledonia United
Point Fortin Civic vs St. Ann’s Rangers
North East Stars vs Defence Force

Current Digicel Pro League 2015/16 standings after Round Two Match Day Six
# Team GP W D L GF GA GD PTS
1 Defence Force 15 9 5 1 40 8 32 32
2 Central FC 15 9 4 2 36 11 25 31
3 W Connection 15 8 5 2 38 13 25 29
4 San Juan Jabloteh 15 7 2 6 26 25 1 23
5 North East Stars 15 6 4 5 19 29 -10 22
6 Police FC 15 6 3 6 34 33 1 21
7 Club Sando 15 5 2 8 15 25 -10 17
8 Morvant Caledonia Utd 15 4 1 10 14 36 -22 13
9 Point Fortin Civic 15 3 3 9 14 35 -21 12
10 St. Ann’s Rangers 15 2 3 10 13 34 -21 9



Teams at the Larry Gomes Stadium on Sunday
North East Stars: 1.Shane Mattis (GK), 4.Jesus Perez, 19.Glenton Wolfe, 8.Neveal Hackshaw, 21.Neil Mitchell, 28.Dillon Jagasar (2.Reon Moore 46th minute), 24.Adrian Noel, 25.Keryn Navarro (Capt.), 23.Brendon Figuera, 29.Hakim Baird (27.Quincy Charles 52nd minute), 39.Taryk Sampson (41.Renaldo Francois 60th minute)

Unused substitutes: 22.Cleon John (GK), 26.Carey Brown 

Coach: Ross Russell

W Connection: 1.Terrence Lewis (GK), 2.Kurt Frederick, 3.Gerard Williams, 5.Triston Hodge, 8.Briel Thomas, 21.Shannon Gomez, 10.Jomal Williams, 12.Dimitrie Apai (17.Aikim Andrews 62nd minute), 14.Andre Toussaint (46.Anfernee Frederick 80th minute), 19.Dwight Quintero (20.Jamal Charles 65th minute), 23.Kevon Goddard 

Unused substitutes: 22.Aquelius Sylvester (GK), 4.Maurice Ford, 34.Jabari Mitchell, 35.Keston Julien 

Coach: Stuart Charles-Fevrier

Thirteen members of this country’s Senior Women’s Team will depart Port of Spain on Sunday morning at 9:15 am for Houston where they will be joined by eight other members for a ten-day live in training camp leading up to the CONCACAF Final Round of Olympic Qualifying action.

T&T head coach Richard Hood selected 21 players for the squad which will be captained by Maylee Attin-Johnson with defender Arin King as Vice-captain.

Hood described the squad as a balanced one with a combination of experienced individuals and others who will breaking onto the Concacaf stage  for the first time such as Kayla Taylor and Jo-Marie Lewis.

“The squad comprises a mixture of experienced and new players to international football,” Hood told TTFA Media.

“We do have a few players carrying minor injuries buy we are confident that everyone will be ready to compete.

“I believe that it is a tremendous boost to the team that we have the opportunity to camp and acclimatize to the conditions in Houston,” he added.

Hood mentioned that despite the absence of Rhea Belgrave and Brianna Ryce who were both ruled out due to College commitments, the T&T team possesses the ammunition to advance in the competition.

“We are missing a few players that we would have liked to have with us including Rhea Belgrave and Brianna Ryce but were unable to secure the necessary time off from college. We believe that we have a realistic chance of attaining success in this tournament. We are very aware that it is going to be an enormous task but God’s willing we shall prevail,” Hood added.

The 21-member squad

The players leaving Port of Spain include: Maylee Attin Johnson, Kimika Forbes Saundra Barron, Arin King, Jenelle Cunningham, Anastasia Prescott, Chevonne John, Janine Francois, Naomi Guerra, Tasha St. Louis, Ahkeela Mollon,Kennya Cordner and Jo- Marie Lewis.

Joining the team in Houston will be Shallette Alexander, Karyn Forbes, Liana Hinds Danielle Blair, Mariah Shade, Kayla Taylor , Victoria Swift and Khadidra Debesette

During the training camp, T&T has one warm-up game confirmed at this point, to be played against ECNL Club.

T&T will play its opening game of the tournament against Guatemala on February 11th at the BBVA Compass Stadium. T&T will then face Canada on February 14th and Guyana on February 16th. The top two teams in the group will advance to the semi finals with the two finalists moving onto the Rio 2016 Olympics.

Chef to travel with Team

Trinidad and Tobago Football Association President David John-Williams does not intend to sit down and cry over the financial woes he has inherited.

Instead he has found an innovative way to cut costs starting with the National Women’s Team trip to Houston, Texas for the 2016 Concacaf Olympic Qualifying Tournament.

The Trinidad & Tobago team will fly to Houston for a full ten-day camp ahead of the tournament during which time will also play two warm up matches.

However instead of incurring high prices for hotel meals the Women Soca Warriors will take along a Chef which would considerably reduce the costs of meals during camp .

Speaking to TTFA Media,John Williams said. ” We have got to make the best of this bad financial situation we inherited. ”

“The Sports Company and the Ministry of Sports have done their part with the tickets and the Trinidad and Tobago Olympic Committee has chipped in as well. Therefore we must be innovative and think outside the box to cut costs,’ Williams added.

While the measure is primarily aimed at cutting costs, the TTFA President pointed to other advantages of traveling with a Chef.

“We are taking someone with an appreciation for what an athlete must eat and off course there is nothing better tasting that good home cooked T&T food,” he added

Williams hinted that this innovation may become standard especially with the T& T youth teams.

“With the falling oil prices we have got to become creative while operating on tight budgets. We will evaluate how this works and then see the feasibility for the other teams especially in youth football,” Williams stated.