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Former Trinidad and Tobago football team midfielder and captain Travis Mulraine has returned to San Juan Jabloteh, in the Digicel Pro League, after a short-lived stint as an assistant coach to Ralph “Arab” Nelson for Joe Public in the bmobile National Super League.

Mulraine played for both Jabloteh and Joe Public during his club career, as well as W Connection and its namesake Crab Connection, before retiring from active football at the end of last season.

“I spoke to the manager of Jabloteh,” said Mulraine, during an interview on Friday night. “Initially, I had a contract with Joe Public and (the Joe Public chairman) contacted the club and they (Joe Public) gave me the green light to (join) Jabloteh.

So we agreed on terms and I’m here now.” He has no ill feelings towards Joe Public, and stated that his move is another step in his development as a coach. “It was good,” was how he described his coaching stint at Joe Public (his contract was due to expire at the end of the year). “I was (with) the Super League team (in) the assistant coach position. “I also played with the reserve team,” he continued.

“So I was playing and coaching. That’s the transition before you start full-time coaching.” Mulraine added, “it was going pretty well, but as opportunities come, sometimes you have to grab them.

“Jabloteh is a club that I hold close to my heart,” he noted. “They did a lot for me during my playing career and they were in a (sort of) disarray at the start of the season so I saw this opportunity to go and help them out, help re-organise the team because Terry Fenwick is a big loss, whether we like him or hate him.

“I saw this as a great opportunity for my career, so I grabbed it, with both hands.” What is his specific role at Jabloteh? “Basically I have three jobs,” he responded, “assistant coach at the Pro League level, I’ll be in charge of the reserve team and also the Under-17 team.” How does he envision his new role with the current Pro League leaders? “I’ve only been in the job (for) a week,” he said. “The guys, you need to motivate them.

“It’s about the hardest job I foresee for us as the coaching staff,” Mulraine noted, “because they have all the talent and ability but, to motivate them, to keep their feet on the ground.” He continued, “sometimes players get comfortable with just playing in the Pro League and being a star. “They need to start dreaming bigger (things) and that’s our jobs as coaches,” he ended.