Some Of T&T'S Past and Retired Players.
Name: Brian Haynes.
Height: 6' 0".
Nationality: Couva, Trinidad.
Previous Club: Dallas Burns (USA - MLS).
NOTE: Haynes is now retired from Club and International football. The Former Burn midfielder was named as an Assistant Coach of the Dallas Burn team on March 16, 2001. In his four-plus years with the Burn, Haynes played in 77 regular season games, scoring eight goals while adding six assists. He was the fourth-leading scorer on the team in 1996 with four goals and three assists for 11 points. Prior to joining the Burn, Haynes played indoor for the Kansas City Attack and outdoor with the Orlando Lions, the Maryland Bays and the Colorado Foxes. Haynes, who holds a Class “B” coaching license, is married to Jeanne and has daughter, Jordan, and a son, Jonah.
Height: 6' 1".
Birthplace: Arima, Trinidad.
Club: Virginia Beach Mariners (USA, Mar-2006 to present).
Previous Clubs: Tampa Bay Mutiny (USA), Rochester Rhinos 1998-00 (USA), Colorado Foxes 1997 (USA), Jacksonville Chargers 1997 (USA), Rochester Rhinos (USA - 2002-2005).
School: Arima Senior Comprehensive (Trinidad), Belhaven College(USA).
NOTE: For the third season consecutive year defender Craig Demmin was selected by his Rhinos teammates as the Flanders Group team Most Valuable Player, Demmin got waived by his former MLS team Tampa Bay in October, 2001, he was drafed by the MLS outfit in 2001 super draft, overall pick, first round numder 6th, he made his T&T WC debut on the 8th of October, 2000, aganist Mexico.
The Charleston Battery and Milwaukee Rampage each made strong pitches for Craig Demmin in Febuary of 2002, but the three-time Rhinos MVP has decided to return to Rochester.
The defending A-League champions (Rochester Rhinos) are expected to announce his signing on Wednesday, 7th, Feb, 2002, It took a few weeks to iron out details, but Demmin agreed to a three-year contract.
Craig Demmin gets 3-year deal from Rhinos.
By Jeff DiVeronica.
08-Feb-2002 — The Charleston Battery and Milwaukee Rampage each made strong pitches for Craig Demmin, but the three-time Rhinos MVP has decided to return to Rochester.
The defending A-League champions are expected to announce his signing today. It took a few weeks to iron out the details, but Demmin agreed to a three-year deal.
"I feel very excited. I have a lot of close friends on the team and outside of it," Demmin said Tuesday from Mississippi, where he has been training and coaching youth soccer. "It's nice to come back home to play."
A native of Trinidad & Tobago, Demmin has family in the Washington, D.C., area and friends in Mississippi, where he went to college, but he considers Rochester home. He played for the Rhinos from 1998-2001, helping them win two A-League titles and the 1999 U.S. Open Cup crown. He spent much of his off-seasons staying with a family in Penfield and was there for the holidays.
For three seasons, the 6-foot-2, 200-pound Demmin teamed with Scott Schweitzer to anchor the league's best defense (41 shutouts in 84 games).
He gave Major League Soccer a try last season but was waived in November by Tampa Bay. Charleston and Milwaukee each offered to sign Demmin's younger brother, Dwyane, if it would entice Craig to sign there, but he chose Rochester.
Craig Demmin clears waivers; Rhinos interested.
defender Craig Demmin has cleared MLS waivers and Rochester Coach Pat
Ercoli says the Rhinos are interested in having him back.
Demmin, the tall, rangy defender from Trinidad and Tobago, found it tough sledding with the Tampa Bay Mutiny last season after he was chosen in the first round of the MLS Superdraft. He started all 19 of the games he played in, but was part of a Mutiny defense that was tagged for 68 goals in 27 games, 18 more than the next worst club, D.C. United.
A three-time Rochester team MVP and three-time all-league selection, Demmin is highly thought of by the Rhinos, who are in the midst of examining their personnel options for next season.
"If the opportunity came up where we could fit him into our salary structure, we would love to have him back," said Ercoli, whose Rhinos have won three A-League titles in the last four years. "Everyone here has spoken to him at some point over the last week or two."
Demmin's combination of physical play, skill and leadership is something that endeared him to Ercoli and the entire Rochester organization. That he did not experience success with the Mutiny, Ercoli said, probably had a lot to do with Tampa Bay's overall team defense.
"To me a team wins and loses as a team," Ercoli said. "You defend as a team and you score as a team. I'm always looking at what we have to do with our team to be successful. Unfortunately, they may have expected Craig to be the one who would organize and orchestrate all of that. It didn't necessarily happen.
"He was disappointed (at how things worked out in Tampa). Everyone takes pride in what they do and part of his pride is preventing goals from being scored. When you allow as many goals as Tampa did, then you take it personal."
Demmin, part of a constantly changing Mutiny back line, found himself playing as the main central defender for much of the year. Without a Scott Schweitzer to cover for him at critical times, his versatility could not be fully utilized by the Mutiny and he could not carry the heavy load for the MLS club.
"The fact that he's a foreigner and fills a spot where they might vitally need someone in the midfield or up front, could also be another reason they let him go," Ercoli said.
Ercoli praised Demmin's contribution to the Rhinos' success, including the 1999 season when they stunned the pro-soccer establishment by winning the 1999 U.S. Open Cup.
"Craig had a very unusual understanding between him and Scott (Schweitzer), and they were a very good combination," the coach added. "When he left, Scott had to adapt his own game. Fusini (Dauda) fit into the role, but he didn't have all the tools that Craig has.
"When you compare everyone, Craig has the ability to win any air balls and the physical ability to be intimidating, but he also has the speed. Fusini has the intimidation factor and the technical agility, but not the quickness that Craig possesses.
"Kalin (Bankov) is totally different. He's a quick player who attacks more, likes to get forward and commit players. He's really similar to Scott in the way he plays. In fact, when we brought him in, we had some concern that we had two players who did the same thing."
Ercoli hinted that while Dauda, Schweitzer and Bankov all performed admirably, the return of Demmin would bring a wide range of defensive weapons back into the Rochester arsenal.
"When he had a break this year, he came up here and worked out with us," Ercoli said. "All the guys were happy to see him. Craig has always viewed this as his home. He has some close friends here and certainly if things can be worked out, he'd love to be back here, and we'd love to have him."
In related news, Columbus Crew cut youngsters Mario Longo and Kevin Adams ahead of Monday’s MLS Waiver Draft.
A recent Pro-40 graduate, Longo appeared in four regular season matches and two US Open Cup matches, recording just two assists. The 20-year-old midfielder spent some time with Napoli’s youth system before joining the Crew in 2001.
Adams, 21, spent just one season with The Crew, appearing in five matches, after being selected by Columbus in the third round (No. 30 overall) of the 2001 MLS SuperDraft. Classified as a youth international, the Trinidad and Tobago defender played for Joe Public before joining Columbus.
The Crew will pick eighth in Monday’s MLS Waiver Draft.
Club Management: W Connection Assistant Coach (Trinidad, 2008 to present), Starworld Strikers Assistant Coach (Trinidad, ?-2006 to Dec-2006).
Height: 5' 6".
Previous Clubs: Arnold Town (England), Grimsby Town (England), Tamworth (England), Scunthorpe United (England), Harrogate Town (England), Darlington (England), Felgueiras (Portugal), Barnsley (England), Goole Town (England), Hull City (England), Hucknall Town (England), Scarbrough (England), Armthorpe Welfare (England).
Clint Marcelle joins Grimsby Town.
By Rob Sedgwick.
06-Aug-2004 - Former Boro favourite Clint Marcelle has signed for the Mariners on the eve of the new season. The former Barnsley and Hull forward has been linked with Grimsby all summer, but Russell Slade left it down to the wire to finally get his man.
The 35-year-old Trinidadian has spent part of the summer on trial at Blundell Park and has now signed a short-team contract. If Russell Slade decides to play his favoured 3-4-3 formation, then Marcelle would be expected to start in Town's opener with Darlington tomorrow.
Macc abandon Clint Marcelle move.
14-Feb-2002 - Macclesfield have given up hope of signing Clint Marcelle after the striker was unable to resolve his contract dispute with Darlington.
Macc boss David Moss has been trailing Marcelle for the past two weeks in a bid to bolster his lacklustre strikeforce and had hoped to snap the 33-year-old up over the next week.
However, after being left out in the cold at Feethams, the former Barnsley man is currently embroiled in a contract dispute with Darlington chairman George Reynolds which he has been unable to resolve, forcing The Silkmen to turn their attentions elsewhere.
Taylor has told Marcelle that he can leave on a free transfer but he nows seems likely to stay put at Feethams until the summer when his current contract comes to an end.
Former Tyke Clint Marcelle wants to
play in the United States next season as he believes his English career
has hit a brick wall at Darlington.
The 33-year-old forward, who hails from Trinidad, is one of four players at the Third Division club who were told they are surplus to requirements and can leave as soon as they find a new team.
Darlington manager Tommy Taylor has informed US officials of the player's wish and that he is available.
Marcelle was at Barnsley from 1996 to 1999 and helped The Tykes win promotion to the Premiership, before going out on loan to Scunthorpe and then signing for Hull in September 2000.
He then joined Darlington on a free transfer in February, signing an 18-month contract with The Quakers, but could now be on his way out of the country after finding his opportunities limited.
Name: Irasto Knights.
Club: Horizon Soccer Club (USA).
Previous Clubs: Courts Caledonia AIA (Trinidad), Long Island Rough Riders (USA), Connecticut Wolves (A-League, USA), Toronto Lynx (Canada), Athletico Alianzia of Sullana (Peru).
NOTE: Last played for T&T in the Copa Caribe of 1998.
Toronto Lynx beats 1860 Munich 1-0...Irasto Knights scores.
News of: Canada.com.
19-May-2002 - For a team that's been unlucky early this season, the Toronto Lynx got a huge boost Saturday with a 1-0 win over Munich 1860 in an exhibition soccer match. TnT star striker Irasto Knights scored the lone goal as the Lynx surprised the touring German club in front of 2,790 fans who braved a blustery afternoon at York University.
The former TnT striker Irasto Knights, a fast, powerful striker, took a pass from Niki Budalic, then beat Munich goalkeeper Simon Jentzch with an easy left-footed shot into an open net in the 16th minute.
"It's a team in a higher division than us, and so we've got to show a little class," Knights said on his team's game plan. "They probably expected us to be like the other teams they played against (on this tour), but we're a different class of players and individually skillfull and we just stepped up the pace when we had to." The win was just what the Lynx needed after opening their North American A-League season with a 1-1-3 record.
Kevin Austin left out in the cold.
Blanche (Western Mail).
24-Nov-2005 - As Trinidad and Tobago's World Cup heroes returned to their sun-kissed homeland and basked in the warm glow of a national holiday, Kevin Austin was wrapped up in chilly South Wales.
Which was pretty apt when you think of the Swansea City defender and how his international aspirations for the tiny Caribbean nation have been put on ice.
Austin has been out in the international cold since winning his solitary cap for Trinidad and Tobago in a World Cup qualifier in November 2000.
As Dennis Lawrence's play-off winner - which secured the island's place at their first-ever World Cup finals in Germany next summer - was replayed over and over again, the Soca Warriors became instant national heroes and celebrated like never before.
But Austin was back in Swansea dreaming of what might have been and still clinging on to the faint hope he could be testing himself against the likes of Ronaldo, Rooney and Ronaldinho this summer.
"If you'd told me a year or so ago that Trinidad and Tobago would qualify for the World Cup I wouldn't have believed you," admitted the 32-year-old Hackney-born defender, who qualifies for the country 51st in the Fifa rankings through his Trinidadian mother.
"It's a small country and they're not renowned for being a football nation, even though football's been big over there for the last 10 to 15 years. The resources are not great and it's hard to find players, so to qualify for the World Cup is a tremendous achievement."
Guided by the former Real Madrid manager Leo Beenhaker, Trinidad and Tobago progressed to the final stage of the North and Central America and Caribbean section.
Familiar names such as Dwight Yorke, Stern John and Shaka Hislop form the core of the side and fourth place behind the United States, Mexico and Costa Rica was enough to secure a two-legged play-off with Bahrain.
Lawrence's headed goal after a 1-1 home draw was enough for Trinidad and Tobago to become the fourth Caribbean nation to qualify for the World Cup finals.
"The boys have done well right through the qualifying round and up to the Bahrain play-off game," said Austin. "Everyone's ecstatic about it and the atmosphere over there is unbelievable.
"But I think they can do well in Germany. They've got good players and a settled side. I'm sure they can rise to the occasion and do well.
"People might think they're just going there to make up the numbers, but I don't think they will."
But will Austin be there in Germany with his countrymen? The odds would seem stacked against the personable Londoner, but his experience and versatility might yet prove useful in a tournament situation.
"I can honestly say I've not given it much thought," said Austin, who made his only appearance in a 1-0 home victory over Panama in a 2002 World Cup qualifier.
"It's five years since I've played and the longer the time goes on you just learn to live with it.
"The boys have done all the hard work and deserve their chance. As a pro footballer the World Cup is the ultimate, but I suppose it would be an injustice now to come in after the boys have done so well.
"Of course, I wouldn't say no if they asked me, but I haven't pushed the matter of trying to get to the World Cup.
"I can't do that. I've got no grounds because I haven't been involved and the only way I can look at it is that if I'm good enough they'll pick me."
Even so, is Austin surprised he continues to be overlooked while play-off hero Lawrence plies his trade at a lower level with League Two Wrexham ?
"Not really," he said. "Dennis has been playing international football for many years now and, no matter what level he's playing at, he's always done well for Trinidad. "Most of my family live on that island but the only thing I concentrate on is doing well for Swansea. Whatever happens after that is a bonus."
Kevin Austin driven on by his World Cup dream.
By Mario Risoli
31-Oct-2005 - Swansea City defender Kevin Austin admits playing in next year's World Cup in Germany would be "a dream come true".
The 32-year-old Londoner has played for Trinidad and Tobago, qualifying through his parents.
The "Soca Warriors" will rub shoulders with the likes of Brazil, Italy and Argentina in the 2006 finals if they overcome Bahrain in next month's World Cup two-legged play-off.
And, if Trinidad and Tobago do make it to Germany, Austin is hoping his displays for the League One promotion-chasers will earn him a place in Leo Beenhakker's squad.
The Hackney product - who can play at left-back and centre-back - has made one outing for the Warriors, back in 2000.
Despite playing a key role in Swansea's promotion last season and their rise up the League One ladder this term, Austin has been inexplicably ignored by his country.
"I've not given the Trinidad and Tobago thing too much thought because, the way I see it, if I'm not picked then I'm not good enough to be in the team," said the former Leyton Orient, Barnsley, Cambridge and Bristol Rovers player.
"But to be involved in the World Cup would be absolutely brilliant. It would be a dream come true for me."
Austin's exclusion is bizarre, considering Beenhakker calls up Dennis Lawrence, who is playing League Two football at Wrexham, and Gillingham duo Brent Sancho and Ian Cox, who play for a side struggling at the foot of League One.
"I haven't got a clue if the current manager knows about me or not," said Austin, a regular in Kenny Jackett's line-up.
"Maybe he does know about me. Maybe he's got better players than me to pick from. Maybe he's looking at different ideas, I don't know.
"All I can do is work hard at Swansea, hold my place down here and see where that takes me.
"My loyalties are with Swansea, to stay in the team and do well. Anything else on top of that is a bonus."
Austin's one and only appearance for the Warriors came in a 1-0 World Cup qualifying win over Panama in Port of Spain in November 2000.
He would surely have played more games for Trinidad and Tobago had he not been sidelined by an achilles tendon injury picked up on international duty in the Cayman Islands.
"When I did play for Trinidad and Tobago, I enjoyed it immensely. If it comes about again, then I'll think about it," Austin went on.
"I got injured the last time I was involved with them and perhaps that scared them off.
"I'm just knuckling down and trying to do my best for Swansea because if I'm not doing well for Swansea then I've got no chance of playing for Trinidad and Tobago again."
Austin's immediate thoughts are not on regaining his international place but on keeping Wayne Allison quiet in today's league clash with fifth-placed Chesterfield at the Liberty Stadium.
After picking up one point from the last nine, the likeable defender is looking for the Swans to return to winnings ways.
"If this is our bad spell, we'll take it. We're not panicking about our last few results because I don't think we've played badly in those games," he remarked.
"We've stuttered a little bit recently, but we're still third. We won 5-2 at Walsall and we beat Bristol City 7-1 at home, but I'd be surprised if we do that again.
"You can't get those results, week in, week out. The teams in this division are too good.
"We deserved to beat Bristol City on the day, but every season you see a freak result and that was it.
"I'm not surprised we're doing well because we believe in ourselves and we know we're a good side.
"But I'm surprised at the number of goals we've scored and that we've won games 5-2 and 7-1."
Austin played mainly left-back last season, but has mostly operated in the heart of defence this season.
"Beating Chesterfield would be a massive win. Ideally it would be nice to keep a clean sheet and get a few goals," he smiled.
"Chesterfield will be a tough test. Allison is a physical player and a good striker.
"But I relish the challenge of playing against good players. That's why I came to the club."
Kevin Austin joins Swans.
10-Jun-2004 - Swansea City boss Kenny Jackett has completed the signing of defender Kevin Austin. The 31-year-old has joined the Swans on a one-year deal from Bristol Rovers.
The Trinidad & Tobago international has had spells with Leyton Orient, Lincoln, Barnsley and Cambridge before joining Bristol Rovers, where he formed an impressive partnership with skipper Adam Barrett.
Kevin Austin joins Ronnie Mauge at Bristol Rovers.
18-May-2002 - Lincoln City's Third Division rivals Bristol Rovers have signed former Imps' central defender Kevin Austin on a free transfer.
Austin joined Lincoln City in July 1996 from Leyton Orient, for £30,000 and rapidly became a fans' favourite and a first team player. He was brought to Lincoln by then Imps' manager John Beck, who described his signing "as the final part of the jigsaw".
In October 1998, Bristol City offered Lincoln £400,000 for Austin but Austin rejected the move, preferring to stay at Lincoln until his contract expired the following summer. Several clubs offered him a contract but he elected to join Barnsley, who ironically were Lincoln's League Cup opponents the following season. Austin's fifth game for Barnsley was against Lincoln in the second leg of the cup and it was in this fixture that he suffered a severe injury that kept him out of football for over a year.
Once he regained his fitness, he failed to force his way back into the Barnsley first team and he continued to struggle with minor injures. Joined Brentford on loan in October 2000, making three appearances. A move to Oxford fell through after he failed a medical and Austin was released by Barnsley in July 2001.
Beck, meanwhile, was now the manager of Cambridge United and offered Austin a trial in November 2001. Signed permanently for Cambridge in January 2002 but following Beck's subsequent dismissal Austin was given a free transfer after just seven appearances for Cambridge.
In April this year, he joined Kettering Town of the Dr. Marten's Premier Division where he teamed up alongside current Imps' goalkeeper Paul Pettinger, who was on loan at Kettering. Their presence helped Kettering close the gap at the top of the table and they won the Championship in the final week of the season to reclaim their Conference status.
Two weeks ago, Bristol Rovers appointed former Lincoln City assistant manager John Still as their assistant manager. Still worked with Austin at Lincoln and knows Austin's capabilities, though doubts about his fitness exist, so he has signed an initial six month contract with an option of a further six months.
Name: Leonson "Edward Jeffrey" Lewis.
Club: W Connection (Youth Head Coach - Trinidad, 22-May-2002 to present).
Schools: Naparima College (Trinidad), San Fernando Technical (Trinidad).
Previous Clubs: Union Lamas (Portugal), Estrella Amadora (Portugal), Felgueiras (Portugal). Boavista (Portugal), Desportivo Chaves (Portugal), Port Morant United (Jamaica).
|22-Sept-2006||Leonsen Lewis: Pro League on the rise.|
Leonson Lewis strikes at a new goal.
By: Lasana Liburd.
10-Apr-2003 - For the first time in his illustrious career, former Trinidad and Tobago football strike sensation Leonson Lewis is preparing to spend an entire season on the sidelines.
And Vibe CT 105 W Connection’s new under-20 coach can hardly wait.
His enthusiasm for a new challenge is tempered only by his appreciation for the responsibility that comes with the job.
“It is my first time as coach,” said Lewis, “so I am trying to be complete and touch on everything. I just started a month and a half ago but, with the talent I have (within the squad), I should do pretty well...”
There is a brief pause as Lewis quickly scrutinises his own statement for possible shortcomings.
“Although talent alone does not cut it,” he said finally.
There. Lewis is at ease again and pleased with his own positioning.
At 36, the former “Strike Squad” star has made a good living for himself by not only knowing where he wanted to go but when he should get moving.
Last season, he returned to Trinidad and Tobago after spending 11 years playing professionally in Portugal to round off his career at home with Connection.
He admits he wanted to offer more to his family and longstanding fans than the two goals he managed during an injury plagued 2002 season.
In the end, though, he accepted it was time to try something else.
“I wanted to play one more year but the injuries kept me back,” he said. “And when I found out they were looking for an under-20 coach, I knew it was always something I wanted to do.
“I think I was a bit unlucky to be injured when I was last year. Everytime I started to pick up a little form or get into better condition I was getting ankle injuries and other stuff.
“I would have liked to have played a little more but I enjoyed playing in Trinidad and the respect that a lot of other players gave me.”
It was respect well earned if you believe his former mentor and “Strike Squad” coach Everald “Gally” Cummings, who will lead South Starworld Strikers into Pro League action this season.
As Lewis attempts to recreate himself on the Connection bench, Cummings remembers another crucial time in the life of the speedy left-footed attacker when much was also being asked of him.
Lewis was just 21-years-old when Cummings–also a former icon as a player–inherited the national senior team.
But Cummings explained there were many critics of the striker who rose to prominence with San Fernando Technical Institute alongside the gifted playmaker Russell “Little Magician” Latapy.
“They said he was not a team player and that he was wasteful in front of goal,” said Cummings. “They didn’t think he was national material. In every area they criticised him, he excelled in all those areas and proved them all wrong.
“He took all those critics and made them love him by accepting the role that I gave him to play within the team.”
His resume speaks for itself.
There were three goals in the final round of the 1990 World Cup qualifying series as the “Strike Squad” came within a point of the FIFA finals.
Fourteen more goals came in the modified version of the Caribbean Cup tournament which began in 1989.
His seven-goal tally at the 1992 Caribbean Cup was an individual scoring record that stood for six years before compatriot Stern John fired home ten at the 1998 tournament.
John, who runs for English Premiership team Birmingham City, is the only player to have scored more times than Lewis in the final rounds of the competition with 17 strikes from four Cups.
Lewis’ 14 goals came from just three tournaments.
There were successes for the striker in Portugal as well where he represented Academica, Falgueiras, Boavista and Amadora in the first and second divisions.
A FA Cup winners medal in the 1996/97 season with Boavista ranks highly among his awards from the game while his best returns came in 1995/96 when he was the league’s third highest scorer with 23 goals for Falgueiras.
It is plenty for his young players to try to emulate although Cummings insisted it was just a small part of the story.
Cummings remains the country’s most celebrated footballer in terms of local accolades as a player and coach.
However, he reckoned that Lewis would be on his shortlist if he were asked to name his top ten all-time Trinidad and Tobago players.
“Leonson Lewis ended up being one of the best power forwards that I know,” said Cummings. “He would be in my top ten players of all-time. I would put him next to our best left footers like Warren Archibald, Leroy Spann and Alvin Corneal.
“Some of them might have had as much dribbling ability but they didn’t have the power to run even if somebody is holding him and they were very good. Leonson wasn’t only a good footballer, he was a good athlete.
“I thought Spann was one of the best players I ever saw in Trinidad football. Archibald was outstanding on every level, but Leonson was a piece of all of them.”
Cummings noted that it was very important for the local game to have top players like Lewis give back to the sport as he did with the “Strike Squad”.
“Society is lacking positive role models,” said Cummings, “and, because of his resume and background, he will be able to motivate players.
“The one thing I always admired with him is he was always ready for every game. I have never known a player who you didn’t have to motivate at all...
“It will take time and experience for his coaching skills to kick in but, if we could get more nationals like him working with young players, it would do a lot for football.”
By the look of things, Connection know the potential value of the newest addition to their technical staff.
An announcement on Lewis’ new position with the club was made last Wednesday night at halftime as Connection matched skills with Mexican team, Toluca, in the CONCACAF Club Championship.
Connection fought from two goals down to hold Toluca to a 3-3 draw at Manny Ramjohn Stadium, Marabella.
It was not enough to guarantee Connection a place in the second round, but Lewis still envisages a bright future for the ambitious club.
He explained there was much for the Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation (T&TFF) to copy from the Connection camp.
Lewis is also a big fan of Connection coach Stuart Charles.
“I think he is the best coach in the country and probably the best in the Caribbean,” he said.
Lewis has already taken his mark.
Leonson Lewis sees good football in FCB Cup final.
By: Shaun Fuentes.
8-Aug-2002 - Former Trinidad and Tobago winger Leonson Lewis rated Wednesday night’s First Citizen’s Cup final between winners Defence Force and Vibe CT 105 W Connection as a well played one, praising the two teams for an action-packed encounter.
The former Portuguese-based star, now signed with Connection was forced to look on from the stands due to a slight injury and admitted that he would have liked to play in what would have been his first final since returning home.
Lewis said the Army deserved the victory on the evening.
“It was a good game. I think the Army played the better game and they deserved to win. Connection didn’t put away their chances and easy defensive mistakes gave away the goals. That’s football. If you don’t score then you lose,” said Lewis.
He mentioned that he was home to spend time with his daughter and play the game, as well look into involving himself in coaching.
“I really came back here to be with my daughter and as I’m here in Trinidad, I’ll play football because that’s want I want to be involved in for the rest of my life. I’ll play and then probably coach. My career continues and is not really ending. I already did my coaching courses,” added Lewis, who graduated from coaching courses in Portugal.
Lewis endorses St Lucian coach Stuart Charles Fevier.
By: Ian Prescott.
16-July-2002 - Leonson Lewis is one of this country’s three musketeers and a pioneer for professional football in Trinidad and Tobago.
At one point in time, Leonson Lewis, Russell Latapy and Dwight Yorke were big news.
In the years before they went to Europe to make a name for themselves, Trinidad and Tobago had no professionals..this trio were the modern-day pioneers–the first Trinidad and Tobago footballers to play professionally in the big leagues of Europe.
Ten years ago, when the world was not as global and information did not flow as freely as can now be grabbed off the internet, it was headline news whenever Lewis scored a goal in Portugal.
Trinidad and Tobago felt proud–newspapers sold many-a-more with stories on this threesome. Many a sport journalist felt he had staged a personal coup by getting the information to the public first. These days, when a Trinidad and Tobago players scores abroad it’s hardly news. Everyone has probably already seen it on television, cable...got it on the iternet.
These earlier pioneers paved the way for all the Trinidad and Tobago footballers now playing in Europe. If they had flopped, no one would have wanted Trinidad and Tobago players today.
Being among the first to play in Europe, Lewis was especially cherished. Drastically left-footed, Lewis possessed tremendous acceleration and a cracking shot. For 12 years, he blazed a path for Trinidad and Tobago in Portugal. After four years at Academica, he played two years at Felgueras and then a season at the big Boavista club where he won the Portuguese Cup. Lewis also played two years apiece at Chaves, Estrella Amodara and Union Lamas.
Now, the prodigal son has returned to local football. But is he what we once knew? Has he changed? Should our expectation of him change? Lewis is realistic. At age 35, he’s aware that he may no longer be the superb athlete that thrilled Trinidad and Tobago’s football fans for over a decade. But the former Portugal-based professional is sure he still has something to contribute.
“Some are expecting the Leonson Lewis of eighty-nine. That is impossible,” he declares.
Leonson has always been a star. First as a schoolboy with both Naparima College and San Fernando Technical and later with the Trinidad and Tobago national football team.
His prowess as a goal-scorer is unsurpassed locally and he has probably been the most prolific scorer for Trinidad and Tobago over the last 15 years. Lewis will always be best remembered for his days with the “Strike Squad”, the Trinidad and Tobago national football team which came within a point of qualifying for the 1990 World Cup in Italy.
In tandem with Rangers midfielder Russell Latapy, “Leo” was a formidable force from schooldays and later with the national team. Latapy created the goals, and Leonson tucked them away with great precision.
It was this goal-scoring machinery which landed Lewis and Latapy a first contract in Jamaica and they both signed with Second Division Academica of Portugal as well.
Since then, Lewis has played with five other Portuguese clubs. Latapy has gone on to Porto, Hibernian and is now with Premier League Rangers of Scotland.
In all, Lewis spent 12 years in Portugal and while at Felgueiras in the mid-eighties even finished as the third-highest goal-scorer in the Portuguese First Division.
Now with defending Vibe CT 105 W. Connection in the Trinidad and Tobago Pro League, Lewis has assumed a different role.
“I just play and do the best I can for the team–it’s not necessarily to score a lot of goals. My contribution is not to be the star of the team–my time for that has already passed. My role is to help achieve the goals of the team.”
It is a role Lewis has now become comfortable with. His last two seasons in Portugal were spent at Second Division Union Lamas where he played a similar role.
“They are not a big club,” he said. “They don’t have the money to go up and fight among the big boys yet. So they are trying to survive until things get better.”
Union Lamas survived the last two seasons and while Lewis believed he could still have played a few years in Portugal, he chose to return to Trinidad where he could be close to family.
He says his eight-year-old daughter Lyasha suffered somewhat because he could not be here. He also missed the years when his sister Lyanna grew from his 15 year-old pal into a woman.
Still Lewis draws many positives from his time in Portugal.
“It changed me as a person. It taught me to live within a different culture. That has helped me grow as a person.”
Lewis says that he is now at a point where he has a house, a car and some money in the bank–things which he might not have achieved as easily had he remained here.
Now that he is home, Lewis is comfortable at W. Connection, where he has seen a strong bond forged between the local and Brazilian players.
Some of the locals footballers might only have heard of the exploits of Leonson Lewis or may have been shoolboys when he was at his best. Lewis however, appreciates the respect they have shown him since his return from Portugal.
While Lewis believes his time on the national team was cut short prematurely, he holds no grudges. Instead, he appreciates the opportunity he had to grasp World Cup glory.
Still, Lewis does not believe Trinidad and Tobago will go as close as the “Strike Squad” did any time soon. He makes his judgment based on what he has seen while abroad.
“Even if we have everything in place, we still only have a fifty-fifty chance of making it,” he said.
First of all, Lewis believes that a knowledgable coach is required and that coach must have proper help. Lewis is also of the belief that the required “World Cup” players must be identified now and that the coach probably needs a few years with the players. He also thinks that a series of matches must be played against strong teams–not Caribbean opposition such as Barbados and Grenada. To facilitate this, money must be put in place early in the campaign, so that both staff and players will be comfortable.
“Now is the perfect time to start our World Cup campaign,” he stresses. “Trinidad and Tobago have always waited last-minute to call back our professionals–we have enough talent here! We also have to get money in place. Sponsors must know that they can’t jump on the bandwagon four years from now. We need their support now.”
If Trinidad and Tobago have a chance to reach the World Cup soon, Lewis endorses St Lucian coach Stuart Charles Fevier as a man capable of getting us there. He rates the W. Connection coach as being as good as any he has played under as a professional in Portugal.
Lewis recommends Fervier–who was voted Coach of the Year after the 2001 Trinidad and Tobago Professional Football League–as a perfect candidate for national coach. But even so, Lewis feels that Fervier will still need the help of a knowledgable people. Lewis would like to help and feels that the likes of Latapy, Manchester United’s Yorke as well as knowledgable football persons, have something to offer as well.
Died: 3rd- Oct-2001.
Previous clubs: New Orlean Gamblers (USA), Dallas Burns (USA, MLS), Miami Fusion (USA, MLS), Lehigh Valley (USA), Joe Public (Trinidad), Rochester Rhinos (USA, A-League).
Schools: Arima Senior Comprehensive (Trinidad), University of Mobile (USA).
NOTE: 1998 Season: Finished the season third on the team in total points with 13 (5 goals, 3 assists) ...scored a goal in three consecutive games (7/18-7/29)...assisted on the game-winning goal in Dallas' 1-0, playoff clinching game @ Kansas City (9/19)...registered his first assist @ New England (6/27)...scored his second goal of the season @ D.C. (6/7)...scored his first goal for the Burn on his first shot vs. Kansas City (5/20), Trotman has joined A-League team Rochester Rhinos on loan on April, 5th, 2001.
Members of the Rochester Rhinos club will go
all out in their final match on Sunday against Hershey Wildcats to bring
home the championship for former teammate Mickey Trotman.
The Rhinos cancelled a semi-final American A-League playoff match against Milwaukee Rampage last Wednesday after hearing of Trotman's tragic death but then recorded 3-2 and 1-0 wins on Thursday and Saturday, to go through to Saturday's final. The Milwaukee were after Trotman before he joined Rhinos from Joe Public and coach Boro Sucevic said that his side was not emotionally prepared to face the defending A-League champions. "We knew (Trotman), we respected him," said Sucevic.
The Rhinos have already dedicated the season to Trotman. Rhinos defender Scott Schweitzer said he would do his all to fulfil Trotman's wish.
"Thursday's game (against Milwaukee) was the most emotionally draining game I've played in. When I talked to Mickey (last week) all he wanted to do was win a championship. He thought this was the best chance he's ever had. This would be the most meaningful championship I've ever won," said Schweitzer.
Phil Schoen, editor of the US Soccer Leagues official website indicated on the weekend that there was an immediate rush by fans to purchase Rhinos replica shirts with Trotman's number following the news of his death.
Stern John, who has since had Trotman's nickname "Blacks" tattooed on his left calf, has promised to dedicate all goals scored off his left foot, and all future championships, to the former Arima Senior Comprehensive star.
Name: Peter Prosper.
Club: San Juan Jabloteh (Trinidad).
Previous Clubs: Al-Ansar Sporting Club (Lebanon), SWIF (Trinidad), Starworld Strikers (Trinidad), United Petrotrin (Trinidad).
NOTE: Peter won 2 League Titles and 2 Cup Titles with Al Ansar after making his Al Assar debut on 08/10/1996, Prosper last represented T&T in the Copa Caribe of 1998.
Peter Prosper back to action.
04-Feb-2002 - Trinidad & Tobago former striker and Lebanese based Peter Prosper returned to action yesterday following a hip injury sustained during Al-Ansar's match against Ikha Aley, which kept him away for about three weeks.
Prosper's condition is back to normal, inspite of him still feeling little pain whenever he performs sprints. His presence, greatly missed in the last two matches, gives a massive boost to the team and coaching staff. Teaming up with fellow Trinidad & Tobago midfielder David Nakhid will definitely boost the team and coaching staff's morale and bear it's fruits on the Beirut Sports City Stadium pitch.
Al Ansar who battled aganist T&T's Errol McFarlane club side (Nejmeh FC) in the 11th stage of the Lebanese Football Championship Season 2001-2002 yesterday ended in a draw in front of 30,000 spectators, the first half of the game saw complete Al-Ansar domination. Al-Ansar had the upper hand, displaying good passing, dribbling and creating more opportunitites than Nejmeh.
The start of the second half was quick and hard on Nejmeh. On the 47th minute, skipper Jamal Taha goes in the air one-on-one against Tafeh, rises above him and heads the ball into the nets, both teams were creating chances, but from one side, Peter Prosper and David Nakhid were not posing any real threat on Nejmeh's goal as they were not 100% fit, and from the other side, Ziad Al-Samad was always ready to block Nejmeh's attacks and shots and deny their striker goal scoring opportunities.
That was until the 91st minute of the match. Nejmeh had conceded a corner kick. The cross reached T&T's Errol McFarlane who heads the ball to the right of Al-Ansar's goal. Moussa Hjeij misses the shot which hits the ground and bounces back up to lob Al-Samad and his defenders and finds its way into the nets, however neither of the T&T strikers (McFarlane, Prosper) nor former T&T midfield general David Nakhid was on target for their respected clubs as the game ended in a one all tie, The draw leaves Nejmeh 3rd in the standings, and Al-Ansar 9th with 13 points.
Nejmeh, who were ranked 2nd in the League and competing fearfully for the title ended up settling for just one point, they where trying for three points to boost their position in the lead and cause more problems and concerns for current leaders Sagesse.
Al-Ansar, on the other hand, currently out of the competition being 10th in the standings (now 9th), consider the match as a special fixture as both teams represent the poles of the Lebanese Football.
Name: Richard Theodore.
Previous Club: Defence Force (Trinidad).
School: Mucurapo Senior Comprehensive (Trinidad).
DOB: 22-Oct-1971 to 06-Mar-2004 (RIP).
NOTE: Representing Trinidad and Tobago from youth level. He was also a member of the T&T World Cup Team Youth team that went to Portugal in 1991. Richard's career has just come to a end with him getting a sever injurie to his head.
Ex-national Theodore dies in hospital.
TnT Guardian & Joel Bailey.
08-Mar-2004 - The Football fraternity was plunged into mourning with the death of ex-national footballer Richard ‘Bomber’ Theodore.
The former Defence Force footballer died at the Port of Spain General Hospital on Saturday, following a bout of fever.
According to his sister Gail, 32-year-old Theodore took ill with severe fever last Monday and was admitted to hospital. A CT Scan was done but doctors revealed it was negative and they had to do more tests to determine the cause of the fever.
Theodore drifted in and out of consciousness during the week and he succumbed to the infection on Saturday.
An autopsy will be performed today.
Theodore was a regular player up to 1997, when he fell off a tree at St Peter’s Day celebrations in his hometown of Carenage on June 29, 1997 and suffered severe injuries to his head and spine.
He never played football again. After months of rehabilitation, Theodore resumed working with the Defence Force after recovering from a coma, Theodore spent years undergoing therapy from the Army instructors before he was re-admitted to the regiment where he was later promoted to Lance Corporal.
Richard Theodore was a member of the national Under-20 team under coach Bertille St Clair at the World Youth Cup in Portugal in 1991, the first Caribbean team ever to reach a world champion-ship series. Commenting on Theodore’s death, Defence Force coach and ex-Strike Squad midfielder Hutson “Barber” Charles said: “He was one of the better defenders we ever produced and, barring the accident, I felt he had a chance to play outside (overseas).”
Name: Ross Russell.
Club: Defence Force (Assistant Coach - Trinidad).
NOTE: Started out at youth level and progressed to the senior level. He gave an outstanding performance at the Shell Cup Finals in 1995. He has made over 30 international appearances, he also had a couple of stints in the UK.
Current Club: Bristol Rovers.
Previous Clubs: Charlton Athletic, Fulham, Bury, Plymouth Argyle, Manchester City, Aldershot Town (England).
Nationality: Born in England to Trinidad & Tobago parentage.
Birth Place: Islington (England).
Height: 5' 10.
T&T debut: Jan, 8th 2000, aganist Canada. Ronnie made his World Cup debut for T&T aganist Jamaica in Jamaica on the 28th of Feb, 2001. Scored his first goal for T&T aganist Guatemala on the 25th of March, 2001, in T&T, a friendly game.
Former English-born footballer sends best wishes for National team.
By: Shaun Fuentes.
25-Feb-2004 - Former Trinidad and Tobago English-born midfielder sent best wishes to the National team yesterday, on the eve of their clash with the Brazil All stars which launched the "Road to Germany 2006" campaign at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.
Mauge, who was a member of the team during the 2002 qualifying campaign also sent a letter to FIFA Vice President Jack Warner expressing gratitude for assistance provided to him by the special adviser to the TTFF.
Mauge's words were touching enough to inspire his former T&T teammates to go the distance this time around.
Although he suffered a broken leg during a Gold Cup game against Mexico in 2000, Mauge said " I would have played for Trinidad and Tobago with no legs as I was so proud to put on the national shirt and represent the country".
The former Bristol Rivers man made his debut for T&T in 2000 but after his injury he took several months before he was able to return to the National Team.
Mauge confessed that he never returned to his previous form and thanked Warner for his support which included medical expenses at the time of the injury.
"I never got the chance to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the compensation money you awarded to me when I broke my leg against Mexico. It's something you didn't have to do for me but you did it and I will never forget that," Mauge wrote in the letter.
"I just want to encourage you for what you are trying to do for football in Trinidad and Tobago. You are doing a great job. Your determination should be a bench mark for all 'Trinis' whose dream is to see their beloved island reach a World Cup Finals," Mauge added in his letter.
The ex-national player has retired from playing both from the international and domestic level but has expressed his willingness to coach Bertille St.Clair to assist in a non-playing capacity in the effort to get to Germany 2006. In response St.Clair stated " Ronnie was a heart and soul player who was always proud to wear the red, white and black. He could teach a lot of our players about commitment and pride. He was always available to play when we called him and I want to thank him for the support he gave to me".
Name: Shurland David.
DOB: 12/4/80 - Trinidad.
Team: St Clair Coaching School.
Previous clubs: Caledonia AIA (Trinidad), Ottawa Wizards (Canada), W Connection FC (Trinidad), Starworld Strikers (Trinidad).
NOTE: A sturdy defender who is at home on either the flanks or in the centre of the defence. Began his youth national career as a midfielder until he was recently converted to a central defender by coach Bertille St Clair. He can, if called upon, play in the midfield and possesses a fierce shot.
Name: Terry St.
Club: Free Agent.
Previous Clubs: Charleston Battery in 1997 (USA), Toronto Lynx (Canada), San Juan Jabloteh (Trinidad), Joe Public (Trinidad), Vancouver Whitecaps (Canada).
DOB: 23rd-Dec-1969, Port Of Spain, Trinidad.
NOTE: Terry sign with the Vancouver Whitecaps on April 27th, 2001. He had an excellent game against Aston Villa when they toured T&T in 1989. He scored what is considered the most outstanding goal in the Shell Caribbean Cup Finals in 1995, He has great speed, flair, style and excitement a good attacking midfield player. St Louis will join up with Rick Titus a Canadian born top defender with Trinidadian parents who's very eager and willing to join and commit himself to the T&T National Senior Team once called upon.
Exciting Trinidad & Tobago international to add flair, style, and speed to Whitecaps attack, and will make home debut Friday, April 27th, 2001.