Trinidad and Tobago goalkeeper Shaka Hislop, now in the midst of new contract negotiations in England, has made a call for all concerned to make the best use of the ongoing opportunity to get a new beginning for the game here, by utilizing all resources at stake and joining heads for the benefits of local football.
Not withholding his disappointment on the departure of Rene Simoes as Technical Director, Hislop said it is now time that we again learn from the experiences and make the necessary right moves for the continuation of the journey towards Germany 2006.
"It is disappointing the way things have turned out and now we have to learn and take up the mantle from Simoes' reign here, his long term visions and what he was trying to achieve here with the linking of all national teams through the age groups under one philosophy," Hislop said from England today.
"We need to ensure that the transformation of the players through the different teams will not be a difficult step and this is what he (Simoes) was trying to improve."
"We have always had the talent so now we need to search deeper as to how we can harness at the senior level because we tend to do good at the lower levels and so we need to take a long hard look at this. There is no doubt in my mind that we have the coaches locally who can assist in this area but we need to have a structure and a belief in whatever we set out to do.
We have to put aside the looks at short term results and look more to what we can achieve on a long term scale," said Hislop.
The T&T captain did not state his choice of a foreign or local individual to take the new charge but reflected on Simoes being able to set a good direction but was unable to bear much fruit because of his short stay here.
"Certainly whoever is put in charge now has to have people around him with the same beliefs and philosophy. There needs to be that same outlook to long term benefits rather than just judging things on what happen only in the short term. Change is inevitable but we need to have someone who can step into the person's shoes and carry on with the work. Probably where we may have gone wrong with Simoes is that we did not have that local person who was very close with him. His reign was short and shorter that we expected and maybe this would have happened."
Hislop hopes that now the next approach will include that closer knit between the administrators, the Technical Director and an individual or individuals who will be able to share their knowledge and experiences of the game.
"I will recommend that we have someone involved, especially a young individual, who can assist from a point of view of having been heavily involved and knows what it is to have passed through the game from our point of view. I have seen that Clayton Morris has been put in charge of the Under 23 teams in the short term and this is good. He is a fine person to have rubbing shoulders with whoever is put in charge.
He commands respects at both the national and club levels because of his achievements and is well respected by the players and the fans because of the fact that he has represented us in fine form before. Someone of his caliber and age will be good for us," said Hislop.
Hislop also hopes that the players can fully cooperate with the administration and each other in light of the current matter.
"Certainly we have to maintain a sense of continuity. Personally speaking and as for the rest of players as well, we have to ensure a balancing act because of our club careers which puts butter on our bread. Through the players recently we did have a unit and could have gone places given the right management and time. Now the coach is gone and the onus falls heavily on the shoulders on the senior players and I hope we can continue to lead and represent," Hislop added to TTFF Media.