Tue, Jun


Trinidad and Tobago's senior men national football team's CONCACAF zone final round World Cup qualifying campaign suffered another setback with the resignation of newly appointed head coach Tom Saintfiet on Wednesday. 

The Belgian, who took up the position on December 7 last year following the dismissal of Stephen Hart, tendered his resignation to Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) president David John Williams via letter on Tuesday evening, after enduring a month on the job with little success. In the four matches T&T played with Saintfiet at the helm, the team posted a 3-1 victory over Nicaragua while suffering defeats at the hands of Nicaragua, Suriname and Haiti.

Speaking with the Express, TTFA's director of communications Shaun Fuentes said, "Saintfiet issued a letter indicating his resignation to the president last night (Tuesday). The president relayed the information to the technical committee and his resignation was accepted."

Fuentes said he was unable to comment on the reason for Saintfiet's decision to quit, but a mandate was given for the TTFA to find a head coach in the shortest possible time.

T&T sit fifth on the six-team table with zero points from two matches and have two all-important matches in March where they battle Panama on the 24 and Mexico four days later. Both matches will be contested at the Hasely Crawford Stadium in Port of Spain.

Saintfiet tweeted: “I would like to inform you all that I have decided to resign, today Tuesday 10 January 2017, as National Team coach of Trinidad and Tobago.”

“Given the mandate to guide the team past Panama and Mexico in the coming World Cup qualifiers of March 2017, I have come to the conclusion that I can’t be successful in this environment.”

“From the first day of my unveiling, I did not get the support of the TTFA and its President,” stated Saintfiet, “support which is needed to be able to do my job in a professional and successful way. I never got the chance to work with the players nor staff requested.”

“Perhaps I should have taken this decision right from day one of my appointment, after the President openly second guessed his own choice of employing me. But I gave him at the TTFA the benefit of the doubt.”

“It was an honour and privilege to work for a beautiful nation like Trinidad and Tobago,” said Saintfiet, “and I wish the players, staff, TTFA, fans and the whole football family the very best, ended the former T&T coach.”