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Sun, Oct

Spence unhappy with women preparation.
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Six days before this country’s Under-20 Women Soca Warriors start the final phase of qualification towards the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Papua New Guinea 2016, coach Jason Spence and his technical are uncertain about the team’s involvement.

Contacted yesterday, Spence said the team was still awaiting confirmation from team manager, Jamiyla Muhammad on the securing of the plane tickets for the 28-member team, 20 of whom are players to head to San Pedro Sula, Honduras.

The Under-20 T&T women booked their spot in the eight-team Concacaf Finals  after getting the better of Puerto Rico 4-3 on penalty-kicks following a 1-1 draw at the end of regulation and extra-time in the Caribbean Football Union third place playoff  at the end of October, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

Following the team’s qualification from the CFU qualifiers, Spence said he hoped that the powers that be will step in and insure the team got what’s needed to really compete at the next level.”

His request included, weekend camps, easy access to quality training venues, bus transport to and from the sessions as well as meals, and quality practice matches. 

However, none of the request made by Spence was lived up too by the T&TFA and speaking yesterday, the frustrated coach said over the past couple of days he has had to do double training sessions to make up for time lost.

He added, “Some of the players on the team were also part of the Under-17 team that only returned from their CFU tournament on Tuesday, while one of the overseas players is still to arrive.”

“The reality is that I had ten players for the most at some of the sessions, so this weekend sessions are actually the first I will be having with the entire squad since we last played in Haiti and I will be doing all that I can do in the time we have before we depart.

With regards to the departure of the team, Muhammad said she was still awaiting word from National Teams Operations Manager, William Williams on the request for the more than US30,000 to secure the tickets. She explained, “Concacaf is taking care of accommodation for all teams, and as soon as we returned from Haiti, we sourced invoices for flights to Honduras because Concacaf requested all teams arrival by December 1.”

“But as we speak, we are yet to get the money for tickets and it now looks like we will not be able to get a flight as well on December 1.

“Our departure now looks like December 2 and then we have to open our campaign against Canada, the following day, so it will be tough going.

Today, the Rene Mike-captained Under-20 Women’s Soca Warriors will continue their preparations with a training session at St Mary’s College Ground, Serpentine Road, St Clair.

A few players who missed the last tournament in Haiti, but competed in the previous round in St Vincent and The Grenadines, Zoe Swift,  Chelcy Ralph, Corel Carmichael, Eden Charles, Ranae Ward and USA-based Amaya Ellis, the daughter of former Queen’s Royal College standout Mark Ellis are expected to be in the final roster.