Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 26th 2015 Contents PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania---
Jamaican defender Wes Mor-
gan says he is relishing the
chance to create history as the
Reggae Boyz take on Mexico
in the finals of the Gold Cup
Morgan, now a regular in
head coach Winfried Schafer s
starting eleven, has been
described as a catalyst through-
out the team s Cinderella run
to the Gold Cup final.
"I ve obviously arrived at a
good time," said Morgan.
"We have a chance to create
history here with Jamaica.
We re in the final of the Gold
Cup. It s amazing. If we keep
it up, maybe...just maybe...we
can lift the cup."
Jamaica beat the USA two-
one to become the first
Caribbean side to reach the
Gold Cup final and are now
seeking to become the first
Caribbean side to capture the
The 32-year-old centre back
has been at the centre of sen-
sational revivals for both
Jamaica and his English premier
League Club Leicester City in
the past twelve months.
Leicester City was given no
hope of maintaining Premier
League status before Morgan
played a huge role for them to
recover and finish in 14th place,
a full six points above the drop
Morgan again watched as
Jamaica failed to earn a single
point at the 2015 Copa Amer-
ica.However, he proved focused
and unfazed, following one of
the biggest upsets in Gold Cup
history, as Jamaica stands on
the brink of glory.
"It s been a bit of a crazy sea-
son for me. For things to have
gone the way they did with
Leicester, with every one saying
that we re going to get relegat-
ed, and then going on that win-
ning streak, it was incredible,"
said Morgan after his team s
stunning 2-1 semifinal victory
over the United States.
"Then, to come out here with
Jamaica and give a good
account of ourselves following
the Copa America...it s just
been a whirlwind, really. It s
unbelievable. We just keep
proving people wrong."
Morgan, who made 37
appearances in all competitions
last season for Leicester, has
pinpointed similarities between
Leicester and Jamaica.
"They are two very different
environments, especially in
terms of time spent together,"
"But both teams have really
incredible spirit and are willing
to fight and scrap. Both teams
enjoy playing with each other.
Those things are so important
at this level."
The final between Jamaica
and Mexico takes place at the
Lincoln Financial Field in
Philadelphia on Sunday starting
7.30 PM (6.30 Jamaica time).
See page 52. (CMC)
Jamaica deserve to be in the Gold Cup
final for more reasons than one. When it
started its qualification through the CFU
finals in Montego Bay some months ago,
the squad appeared to be far from what
the public had come to expect. Every game
it played in that series appeared to be a
At that time, the team that appeared to
be best equipped for the Gold Cup was
Haiti, whose style of play was attractive to
The Jamaicans qualified to play in the
Copa America, an achievement which was
probably the greatest form of motivation
for the Reggae Boyz.
I was fortunate enough to be in South
America when they performed much better
than I had seen in the past. Their opponents,
Paraguay, Uruguay and Argentina, may have
defeated them in very close encounters, but
they earned their respect, even by the local
SA media, which commended them on their
This was the signal for their out-
standing performance in the ongo-
ing Gold Cup, where the competing
countries were well known to them,
with the USA and Mexico being
their biggest challenges.
Honestly, the decision made by
Mexico to utilise some of its
younger players at the Copa Amer-
ica was almost like an insult to the
They were obviously aiming at
the Gold Cup and decided to hold
their top players together for max-
Both these teams came to the
tournament and while the
Jamaicans showed a vast improve-
ment from their South American
performance, the Mexicans did not
create the best impression in their
route to the finals.
I did not expect Costa Rica to
want the best for the Mexicans.
They just do not love each other
in the game of football. When they
were subjected to a penalty goal in
the semifinal against Mexico, they
Well, amidst all of this furor, the Reggae
Boyz showed that they were more than ready
for all comers. They pushed aside their early
opponents, they went even further, scored
two early goals against the mighty USA and
battled through an atmosphere of physical
and tactical combat for 40 minutes leading
to their ultimate victory.
That is the reason why I give Jamaica the
edge in this final. These guys are mentally
ready for the job. They will probably get
support from the US, Panama and Caribbean
people, all of whom want Mexico to be
With the experience, form and natural
talents of defenders like Michael Hector,
Wes Morgan and Kemar Lawrence, mid-
fielder Rudolph Austin, plus the outstanding
series from Simon Dawkins, Jobi McCanuff
and Giles Barnes, I feel confident that the
Caribbean champions will win their first
As a Caribbean person, my heart will be
with them, simply because I have always
believed that Caribbean citizens should give
support to each other.
We may be on the verge of paying tribute
to the Reggae Boyz. They have worked hard
and certainly deserve the best result.
Sunday Guardian www.guardian.co.tt July 26, 2015
T&T Under-20 Women Soca Warriors left
on Friday along with coach Jason Spence
and his technical staff for St Vincent and
The Grenadines where they will contest a
three-team Caribbean Football Union round-
robin series towards qualification to the Fifa
Under-20 Women s World Cup.
Today, T&T will open its Group Four cam-
paign against the host country from 5 pm at
Victoria Park and then conclude its round-
robin series against Dominica on Tuesday
against the same team, also from 5 pm.
The remaining preliminary group stage
games also resumes tomorrow and ends on
July 30 in three countries.
The Groups are Two, Three and Four with
the Final Round scheduled to be played from
October 16 to 25, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.
In Group Two which is to be played in St
Lucia the teams are St Lucia, Grenada and
Jamaica. Grenada meets Jamaica in the first
game at 4 pm at the Mindoo Phillip Park.
Bermuda faces St Kitts & Nevis at the Esta-
dio Panamericano San Cristobal at 2 pm in
the Dominican Republic in Group Three.
Group One, which was hosted by Puerto
Rico from June 19-23 was won by Puerto Rico
with maximum nine points from three games.
They defeated Antigua & Barbuda 3-1,
Anguilla 8-0 and Curacao 5-0. Puerto Rico
awaits the outcome of the other groups to
realise who they will challenge in Group A of
the Final Round.
Curacao placed second after beating
Antigua & Barbuda 2-0 and sharing the points
with Anguilla after a 1-1 draw in their
Antigua & Barbuda and Anguilla finished
with a point each, all games were played at
the Juan Ramon Loubriel Stadium, in Puerto
Advancing to the Final Round will be the
four Group Winners, the best runner-up in
the three team group, the second best run-
ner--up of the three team group, the runner-
up of the four team group and hosts Haiti.
These eight teams will be divided into two
groups A and B from which the top three
teams will advance to compete in the 2015
Concacaf Women s U-20 Championship to
be held in Honduras, December 3-13.
Soca Warriors leave
for CFU World
Rebecca Ann Almandoz, Celeste Thomas,
Shaunalee Govia, Naomie Guerra, Zoe
Swift, Renee Mike, Chelcy Ralph, Chelsea
Federick, Chevonne John, Maya Matouk,
Eden Charles, Corel Carmichael, Sawsha
Woznuk, Amaya Ellis, Tsaianne Leander,
Raenah Campbell, Ranae Ward, Kelsey
Henry, Nicolette Craig.
Technical staff: Jason Spence (coach),
Desire Ann Sarjeant (assistant coach),
Lecia Fraser Baptiste (equipment
manager), Ashlee Alonzo (strength and
conditioning athletic performance coach),
Phillip Ian Dore (physiotherapist), Jamiyla
T&T WOMEN'S U-20 SQUAD
Influential defender relishes chance
to create history for Jamaica
Jamaica's big day in football
JOY: Jamaica's Joel McAnuff, top, Rudolph Austin,
lower left, and Je-Vaughn Watson, right, celebrate
after Jamaica defeated the United States 2-1 in a
CONCACAF Gold Cup soccer semifinal on July 22, in
Atlanta, USA. AP PHOTO
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