Wed, Dec

La Forrest: No more excuses please.

Team se­lec­tion, poor of­fen­sive strat­e­gy and the ad­min­is­tra­tion of the game are be­ing blamed for Sat­ur­day night's 6-0 drub­bing by the Unit­ed States foot­ball team over the T&T So­ca War­riors in a cru­cial Group D en­counter of the CON­CA­CAF Gold Cup at the First En­er­gy Sta­di­um in Cleve­land, USA.

How­ev­er, Ron La For­rest, the for­mer na­tion­al coach, speak­ing to Guardian Me­dia Sports yes­ter­day be­lieves there should be no more ex­cus­es from Den­nis Lawrence, the T&T coach whose team se­lec­tion, among oth­er things, have been ques­tion­able.

La For­rest, once con­sid­ered one of T&T's bet­ter strik­ers, said he was con­fused that mid­field­ers Kevin Moli­no and Jo­evin Jones were not able to make Lawrence's start­ing team for the match, and hint­ed that some­thing seems to be wrong with­in the T&T camp.

Ac­cord­ing to La For­rest, all the de­part­ments in the T&T team were in sham­bles last night (Mean Sat­ur­day night), not­ing that the team hard­ly cre­at­ed chances, and the de­fence failed to stand firm. "Foot­ball is played in two halves, and not be­cause you con­ced­ed just one goal in the first half, means you would not con­cede in the oth­er."

He said Lawrence's strat­e­gy has not al­lowed the T&T play­ers to func­tion ac­cord­ing to their strength.

Al­so ex­press­ing their dis­ap­point­ment yes­ter­day with the team's poor show­ing were for­mer na­tion­al play­ers Clay­ton Mor­ris, Hut­son Charles and Dex­ter Fran­cis, all of whom played on T&T's fa­mous 'Strike Squad' which missed on World Cup qual­i­fi­ca­tion by a point in 1989, be­lieve team prepa­ra­tion which stems from the ad­min­is­tra­tion of the sport, is al­so to be blamed for the em­bar­rass­ing re­sult.

Both Mor­ris and Fran­cis made it clear that what you put in, is what you will re­ceive on the day, both ac­knowl­edg­ing that the sport has been at an all-time low in the past few years.

Mor­ris said, "The re­sult is a mir­ror of the prepa­ra­tion the team had go­ing in­to the tour­na­ment. Of course, Lawrence and his staff must share in the blame, but T&T foot­ball teams, re­gard­less of who is in charge, have been at a dis­ad­van­tage from the get-go, be­cause we do not have the right peo­ple at the lev­el of ad­min­is­tra­tion. Since the in­volve­ment of David John-Williams, we have been made the laugh­ing stock around the world."

Charles, on the oth­er hand, said a to­tal lack of con­cen­tra­tion, which may have re­sult­ed from the play­ers' fit­ness lev­el, may have been caused for the play­ers play­ing well in the first half and just col­laps­ing in the sec­ond.

"The play­ers just stopped what they were do­ing in the first half. I think Levi Gar­cia's in­abil­i­ty to con­vert the chance that came his way, was al­so a ma­jor let-down for the team. Had he scored that, it would have changed the game com­plete­ly."

Ac­cord­ing to Charles, the in­jury to T&T de­fen­sive mid­field­er Khaleem Hy­land al­so im­pact­ed the team as it was with­out lead­er­ship af­ter he was tak­en off.