HEAD coach of the national men’s senior team Angus Eve said he is in support of local coaches, explaining that his comments about the TT Premier Football League recently were not intended to criticise them.
In an interview with Newsday last week, Eve said the pace of matches in the TTPFL will not help the national football programme immediately as international football is played at a faster pace.
He said it will take a few more months for the pace of local football to pick up as there was little football over the past three years because of the pandemic.
On April 26, Eve said, “It’s very difficult for the guys to get up to speed in such a short space of time. I think in the second phase of the league, which is supposed to start in September, you’ll see the guys a bit more up to speed.
“The games are playing a little bit slow, not up to the tempo of international football. It’s no fault of the guys, as I said before. In the longer term it would help the national team but to say it would have a massive impact (now), the answer would be no. A little bit down the road, then yes.”
The headline in last week’s story wrote, “Premier League too slow to help Soca Warriors.” In a media conference on Wednesday at the Ato Boldon Stadium, Eve reiterated, “It will take some time to build up to that international pace…I have said that time and time again it will help us in the middle to long term.” Eve said he will not bash local coaches as he is a local coach who has served for years in club football in T&T including being the former head coach of Club Sando FC.
“We have to respect the guys (local coaches) and I respect the guys 100 per cent. It was disappointing for me that people try to cast a wedge between me and the local coaches because I am one of them and I see myself as representing them because usually the first thing we put in the press is that need a foreign coach.”
Eve said local coaches are doing a “tremendous” job.
Eve said many foreign coaches have been at the helm of the national senior men’s football team with limited success.
Eve said local coaches are seen as valuable throughout the region with many of them serving as head coaches. Jamaal Shabazz is the coach of Guyana and Stern John is in charge of St Lucia.