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Michel Poon-Angeron (right) of Trinidad and Tobago competes for the ball with Christian Gardelli (left) of Dominican Republic, during a Concacaf Futsal Championship match held at the Polideportivo Alexis Argüello stadium, in Managua, Nicaragua on Monday, April 15th 2024. (PHOTO BY Victor Straffon/Straffon Images/Mandatory Credit/Editorial Use /No Sale/No Archive)
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Trinidad and Tobago's men's futsal team fell to a humiliating 11-1 loss in their final group game at the 2024 Concacaf Futsal Championship in Managua, Nicaragua on April 15, as they were hammered by Dominican Republic to crash out of the group stage.

Having suffered respective 7-4 and 5-3 losses to the US and Guatemala in their first two games of the tournament, coach Paul Decle's team needed a victory in their final group game to give themselves a chance of advancing to the quarterfinals as one of the best third-placed teams.

T&T started the game on the back foot, as Che Benny, who scored three goals in the first two games, was not in the team for the must-win match.

Playing a Dominican Republic team which got a stunning 7-6 win over the US on April 14, T&T found themselves facing waves of attacks in the first half and they went into the break down 3-0 after goals by Jose Belliard, Marco Gomez and David Rondon.

With the Dominican Republic chasing goals to bolster their goal difference in a bid to top group C, the floodgates opened in the second half as they absolutely played the T&T team off the court with precise passing and clinical finishing.

The T&T team looked disjointed defensively, and they were unable to keep possession for sustained periods to pose any real threat to the opposition.

By the 29th minute in the 40-minute contest, T&T slipped to a 6-0 deficit. Jameel Neptune scored T&T's lone goal in the contest mere seconds after Dominican Republic got their sixth when he finished off a pass from his AC PoS teammate Michel Poon-Angeron.

There was precious little for T&T to celebrate thereafter, though, as Dominican Republic capitalised on poor defending in the final ten minutes to add a further five goals to their jaw-dropping tally.

The impressive Rondon scored three goals in the second half to complete a beaver-trick, taking his tally to seven for the tournament. Belliard also helped himself to a brace.

With the emphatic win, Dominican Republic jumped to six points and easily booked their spot in the quarterfinals, while they finished the group with a healthy +9 goal differential. T&T finished bottom of the group with no points.

The four semifinalists in the Concacaf tourney will advance to this year's Fifa Futsal World Cup in Uzbekistan.


SOURCE: T&T Newsday