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Mon, Jul

FC Santa Rosa Keith Look Loy, left, with his club’s new coach Shurland David at a press conference yesterday.
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Venezue­lans to play for Big Can­nons.

For­mer na­tion­al de­fend­er, now turn coach Shur­land David is the new coach of T&T Su­per League cham­pi­ons FC San­ta Rosa. He was un­veiled to the me­dia at a press con­fer­ence at the Ari­ma Town Hall yes­ter­day on a one-year con­tract, of­fi­cial­ly re­plac­ing Derek King who led the team to the su­per league ti­tle for a sec­ond time in 2018, be­fore mov­ing on to HFX Wan­der­ers FC in the Cana­di­an Pre­mier League.

David whose coach­ing ca­reer be­gan as an as­sis­tant to Jer­ry Moe at Cale­do­nia AIA and in­clud­ed stints at North East Stars as an as­sis­tant coach and head coach, WASA FC and a Mal­oney de­vel­op­ment team up to re­cent, said his in­ten­tion is to main­tain the win­ning cul­ture which the Ari­ma club has been known for over the years.

The 'Big Can­nons' as they are af­fec­tion­ate­ly called, won the ti­tle back in 2016 un­der Kei­th Look Loy as a coach, be­fore Hy­dro-Tech Guaya Unit­ed made a clean sweep a year lat­er (2017). Look Loy, who al­so held the po­si­tion of club pres­i­dent, re­lin­quished his coach­ing du­ties to King last year, a de­ci­sion that al­so reaped in­stant suc­cess.

In front, a small gath­er­ing David said "It is good to join the San­ta Rosa fam­i­ly. They have a good track record, the at­ti­tude of the team, the cul­ture of the team is mar­vel­lous, con­sid­er­ing they came from the zone and when they reached in­to the su­per league, they were con­tenders. It's a nice task to fol­low af­ter Kei­th as a coach win­ning, and af­ter Derek, as a coach win­ning. So we want to main­tain the win­ning at­ti­tude."

He not­ed "The cul­ture the club has cre­at­ed over the past four years is one of a pos­i­tive at­ti­tude, dis­ci­pline-wise al­so. I just want to con­tin­ue and im­prove what has been done and try to make it bet­ter. Last year Queen's Park came close so we have some work to do. We can­not af­ford to sit on our lau­rels and say we won last year and we will do it again."

David promised his team will be boost­ed by a num­ber of new faces to their ros­ter this year but told the me­dia he could not re­veal any names un­til the deals have been sealed and signed. But Look Loy, who was in­stru­men­tal in bring­ing David to their fold, said they will be giv­ing tri­als to two Venezue­lan play­ers as the Venezue­lan com­mu­ni­ty has be­come part of the na­tion­al com­mu­ni­ty and main­ly the Ari­ma com­mu­ni­ty.

The play­ers whom both have a lot of ex­pe­ri­ence play­ing in the top tier Venezue­lan League sys­tem are aged 18 and 21.

The de­ci­sion to give the op­por­tu­ni­ty to the Venezue­lans is in line with his phi­los­o­phy to re­fresh­en the squad every year, en­sur­ing new blood and new com­pe­ti­tion for spaces.

Ac­cord­ing to Look Loy "This sea­son, fol­low­ing on the suc­cess last year and the fact that we sent two play­ers to pro­fes­sion­als con­tracts in Cana­da, this year we look­ing to bring in new play­ers, par­tic­u­lar­ly new younger play­ers. We have a size­able pool of ex­pe­ri­enced play­ers from last year and we can­not win any­thing with­out ex­pe­ri­enced play­ers, but we're al­so bring­ing in sev­er­al young play­ers from with­in and out­side the club, who fall in the age range 17 to 20-21, with an eye to pro­duc­ing play­ers to go abroad."

The su­per league faces an ex­pect­ed change in the struc­ture this year, fol­low­ing a rec­om­men­da­tion by FI­FA/CON­CA­CAF for a merged league.

Video - SPORT: David Takes Over As Santa Rosa Head Coach