The recently held Elite Coaches Symposium hosted by the Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation has been hailed by a series of local coaches including some past national players who have given a thumbs up as it relates to the way forward for coaching development.
Among some of the participants included ex-nationals Anthony Rougier, Clint Marcelle, Leonson Lewis, Peter Pierre, Marlon Charles, Stephan De Four, Angus Eve, Kevin Jeffrey, Derek King, Hutson Charles, Rajeesh Latchoo, Izler Browne, Dion La Foucade and Anthony Streete among others. Technical Director Anton Corneal who was instrumental in setting up the symposium mentioned that the opportunity will also be presented to those currently outside of T&T to be part of the program such as other ex-national players like Dwight Yorke, Russell Latapy, Dennis Lawrence and others.
Rougier, a former national captain who played professionally in England and Scotland said he was enthused by what took place during the three-day symposium at the Larry Gomes Stadium last week.
“I was really impressed with what I saw here and moreso with the lecturers in the likes of Alvin Corneal and Edgar Vidale and Even Pellerud in terms of the information that was presented to us and I think I can speak for all of us local coaches who were invited. The experiences that they (lecturers) spoke to us on was invaluable and one of the things I realized is that I don’t want to go through what they did and I still think they were successful in all of that,” Rougier told TTFF Media
“We do need more time and more symposiums like this. I know for a fact that we can go to the next level and this is the right approach in setting out on trying to achieve success. “
The former Reading FC player noted that Corneal was now in the hot seat as Technical Director and would need the right support round him.
“The appointment of Anton is a good move despite the feeling that that a lot of people may not like him or like the appointment or people may not like those who were appointed to come here but we have to take in the best interest of T&T football. I want to say to the people … let’s take pause and see what we can do to take our football forward. From the Government perspective with the honourable Anil Roberts to the Permanent Secretary Mr Creed . Let’s s see how we can do this. We need to do what is best for Trinidad and Tobago. I don’t think there is a better time than now even if I wasn’t here. There is a lot of opportunity here that I hope by the grace of God we don’t miss out on,” Rougier added.
And Charles, who led the national senior team in Sunday’s 3-2 loss to Finland, was an assistant to Corneal when the team qualified for the 2007 FIFA Under 17 Men’s World Cup in South Korea. Charles believes Corneal is capable of charting the way forward.
“I’ve worked closely with Anton in recent years and there is a good understanding between us. In his new position now as technical director I think once he has the right support around him then he can play a big role in helping our football go forward,” Charles said. “It’s going to take time but we are in a rebuilding stage and I feel once the support is there then things can happen.”