Girlz in do-or-die clash with Trinidad

Observer staff reporter

Friday, October 20, 2017

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PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — When Jamaica's Under-17 Women's team take on Trinidad and Tobago today in their second and final Group F game of the CFU Championship at the Stade Sylvio Cator Stadium in the Haitian capital, there will be little room for error in this must-win contest.

The match between the two arch-rivals, the first game of a double-header, will kick off at 4:30 pm (3:30 pm Jamaica time), while the second game between the hosts and their Group G opponents Cuba is scheduled for 7:30 pm (6:30 Jamaica time).

The Jamaicans, who were chasing back-to-back titles, lost 2-3 to Bermuda in their first game on Wednesday, leaving the Young Reggae Girlz with no chance of defending their title.

Le Lanni Nesbeth (sixth minute), Nia Christopher (15th minute) and Adia Gibbons (22nd minute) got the goals for Bermuda, while Christina Salmon (52nd minute) and Olufolasade Adamolekun (85th minute) scored for the Young Reggae Girlz.

With the loss, Jamaican are rooted at the bottom of the three-team table without a point, while Bermuda are top of the group with four points and have earned a spot in Sunday's final. Trinidad and Tobago are in second spot on one point.

Xavier Gilbert, head coach of the Jamaican team, said that the Girlz will be coming all out against their opponents as there is only one aim and that is to win.

“The situation gets a little harder as we have to win now, we have to win both games. if we win tomorrow (today), then we have to win on Sunday against Puerto Rico to qualify for the CONCACAF final round. The girls are up to it; we have to prepare them properly and motivate them so that they can come out and give a good showing.

“The plan definitely is to go on the attack and see if we can put Trinidad on the back foot as soon as possible. I think once we score early, the girls will be settled and will be a bit more comfortable and hope to carry that momentum throughout the rest of the game,” Gilbert told the Jamaica Observer.

The young Reggae Girlz had a light training session yesterday at Ste Therese complex, and according to Gilbert, things looked good going into today's crucial encounter.

“They (girls) are in a better spirit; we are disappointed after losing to Bermuda on Wednesday, but the girls are in good spirit, which we want to transfer into this game against Trinidad.

“Training went pretty good as we did some recovery work and some ball work with the ones who didn't play. In preparation for the game against Trinidad, we have to tighten up in the defensive area and we are thinking about making some changes to ensure that we come away with the win,” explained Gilbert.

Marlon Charles, assistant coach for Trinidad and Tobago, said this game will test the mettle of his team.

“Our players were sick after a couples of days since we were in Nicaragua, got the virus of vomiting and diarrhoea and after that, to come and did so well against Bermuda, I thought it was a good performance.

“I think we should be stronger. this will be a good game against the Jamaicans. This is a game that we want the girls to go and enjoy because of the experience. This is a game that you want any young footballer to be in because it will build character and how to play under pressure,” Charles said.




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