Thu, Jan

Hyland: We have what it takes to rebound.

So­ca War­riors cap­tain Khaleem Hy­land says he be­lieves his team has what it takes to re­bound from its 2-0 loss to Pana­ma in their 2019 CON­CA­CAF Gold Cup Pool B match at Al­lianz Field, Min­neso­ta on Tues­day night.

The de­feat left T&T joint bot­tom of the four-team pool with Guyana, which suf­fered a 4-0 drub­bing against the USA in Tues­day's sec­ond match.

Up next for T&T is a clash with the USA on Sat­ur­day in Cleve­land be­fore fac­ing Guyana next Wednes­day in Kansas.

Speak­ing af­ter the loss to Pana­ma, the 30-year-old Hy­land who plays for Sau­di Ara­bi­an club, Al Faisaly said: "Its al­ways a dif­fi­cult game against Pana­ma. We know Pana­ma is a good team as they hold back and wait on the counter-at­tack."

"We had a good start, but just you know sim­ple mis­takes cost us and I would take the blame for the first goal, but you know its a team ef­fort and we will keep on go­ing un­til the last game."

Look­ing ahead to his team's next match Hy­land said, "We fo­cus now on the next game which is Amer­i­ca and hope­ful­ly we can do things and change things around."

"At this lev­el when you don't score, you will al­ways get chances against you, so it's very dif­fi­cult to don't score and ex­pect the oth­er teams to don't score al­so."

"So you have to have some luck on your side which we didn't have to­day, but as we say, we will go back to the draw­ing board, work hard and hope we can tidy up our mis­takes and come out for the next game against Amer­i­ca.

Asked he felt T&T had what it takes to get the pos­i­tive re­sults in its next two match­es, Hy­land replied, "For sure we have what it takes to re­bound. I be­lieve in all the guys and the staff, we have been work­ing hard and we just have to con­tin­ue to work hard and hope­ful­ly, we can be suc­cess­ful at the end.

"We just need to im­prove on our own mis­takes. We give away too many easy pass­es which sim­ply we could do bet­ter be­cause it cost us the game."

Mid­field­er Kevin Moli­no, 29, of US Ma­jor League Soc­cer's Min­neso­ta Unit­ed said it was a tough one to lose.

He added, "I think we fought hard and cer­tain pe­ri­ods of the game we could have done bet­ter, all of us were slop­py.

"We have to re­bound, and go back to the draw­ing board and work hard, and keep the fight."

"I want­ed three points, un­for­tu­nate­ly, I didn't get it, but I'm hap­py to be here and play­ing and the fan sup­port was great."

"Over­all, we did get the three points we want­ed, we now have to stay fo­cus and look for­ward to the next match."

Look­ing ahead to the USA match on Sat­ur­day, Moli­no said, "We just need to get a good re­sult and make sure and don't lose the game, and I be­lieve we have what it takes in the lock­er room to win the game."

Moli­no not­ed the Amer­i­cans will be com­ing to win the match against T&T as well to make amends for the de­feat dur­ing the last World Cup qual­i­fiers, which dashed their qual­i­fi­ca­tions hopes and hand­ed Pana­ma a World Cup spot.

"They will be com­ing with an ex­tra dri­ve, but al­so us be­cause we want to win the game and qual­i­fy for the next rounds.

"For us most im­por­tant­ly it's not about the last re­sult, but for us right now here and try­ing to go for­ward in this tour­na­ment."

Winger, Levi Gar­cia, 21, of Ironi Kiry­at Shmona in Is­rael said it was a dis­ap­point­ing re­sult.

"The team fought hard, so we have to re­cu­per­ate, con­tin­ue train­ing and we still have two games in hand that can bring us six points. It was a good start to the game for us, we were full of con­fi­dence and we were do­ing well. The chances we didn't take them and we were a bit slop­py in the at­tack­ing third. Both goals came from sim­ple mis­takes."

"But we are all at fault as a team, and as I would say, we slept a lit­tle bit and we paid for it.

Look­ing ahead to the rest of the tour­na­ment, Gar­cia said, "I to­tal­ly be­lieve in the team, and an­tic­i­pates the guys com­ing back in train­ing, work­ing even hard­er and get­ting the six points that we need."


Lawrence: We paid the price for defensive lapses.
By Nigel Simon (Guardian).

So­ca War­riors coach, Den­nis Lawrence said his team paid the price by con­ced­ing two goals due to de­fen­sive laps­es in their CON­CA­CAF Gold Cup Pool B open­er, 2-0 loss to Pana­ma at the Al­lianz Field, Min­neso­ta on Tues­day night.

Sec­ond-half goals from Ar­mano Coop­er in the 52nd and Edgar Barce­nas in the 68th earn the Cen­tral Amer­i­cans three points and end­ed a nine-match win­less streak since their World Cup cam­paign, and the team's first win in 14 match­es dat­ing back to April 17, last year.

Speak­ing af­ter the loss on Tue­sady night, Lawrence was quick to state he felt the match it­self was close.

He said, "I didn’t feel it was much in the game. The two crit­i­cal mo­ments came when we gave the ball away, and we got caught, and the sec­ond one was we al­most scored. So two soft goals we give away. We have dug our­selves in a bit of a hole now which means we have to start think­ing about get­ting two wins from the next two games."

He con­tin­ued, "That’s in­ter­na­tion­al foot­ball. If you don’t take your chances and you give away pos­ses­sion you can get hurt. Pana­ma has qual­i­ty play­ers that can do that to you, so we now need to re­cov­er very quick­ly. Pull away from all the neg­a­tives and go on­to the next game.”

Com­ment­ing on the first-half dis­play of winger Nathan Lewis, who played on the right flank, Lawrence, a for­mer na­tion­al World Cup de­fend­er said, "As I said be­fore, to me there was noth­ing much in the game, and I ac­tu­al­ly think in the first half we had prob­a­bly the bet­ter of the chances. We got in bet­ter sit­u­a­tions with­out putting the ball in the back of the net, and Nathan, un­for­tu­nate­ly, got a bit tired com­ing down to the end of the half, which I think is be­cause of the lack of game time with his club (he plays for Lans­ing Ig­nite), and is some­thing that we need to try and work on be­tween now and then."

He ex­plained, "Kevin has ob­vi­ous­ly been out for a while, but when it comes to play­ing in his home sta­di­um, I think it would have been fool­ish of us not to try and take ad­van­tage of that sit­u­a­tion, and he did rel­a­tive­ly well. I think with the way Pana­ma played, par­tic­u­lar­ly in the first half, with Es­co­bar (Fi­del) play­ing more of a sit­ting in, it helped him (Moli­no) be­cause he was able to play and stay with him, and then when we got pos­ses­sion, he was able to play off of him."

Up next for the T&T is a must-win clash with host USA on Sat­ur­day, at First En­er­gy Sta­di­um, Cleve­land, Ohio from 8 pm be­fore Guyana match four days lat­er at Chil­dren's Mer­cy Park, Kansas City, Kansas on June 26, from 6.30pm.

The Amer­i­cans sit at the top of the four-team pool af­ter blank­ing Guyana 4-0 in Tues­day's sec­ond match at the Al­lianz Field.