|Guatemala||Trinidad & Tobago|
|Conrad Smith (90')|
|2004-08-11||Estadío Mateo Flores||Guatemala City, Guatemala||9000|
Mishaps as Soca Warriors downed 4-1 by Guatemala
|Trinidad and Tobagos senior footballers suffered a 4-1 defeat to
Guatemala in a night of mishaps for the Soca Warriors in Wednesdays
friendly international at the Mateo Flores Stadium, Guatemala City.Using the game as a final tune up for next weeks 2006 World Cup
qualifier against St Vincent and the Grenadines, fortune was way out of
favour for skipper Angus Eve and his teammates.|
To start things off, Eve never saw action as an old knee injury acted up in the warm up session moments before kick off, forcing coach Bertille St Clair to replace him with young midfielder Denzil Theobald and Anthony Rougier wore the armband.
After matching the Central Americans who were playing before a home crowd of 9,000, for the opening stages of the game, T&T then lost left side defender Marlon Rojas to a second bookable offense and to top it off, then another duo on the same play in the 52nd minute. China-based striker Gary Glasgow suffered a broken shin when he went to meet a left side cross from defender Derek Phillips who was initially on his way to goal before pulling up with a thigh strain which forced him to play the cross before he fell on the turf.
The end result of the move was Guatemala clearing to safety but the final diagnosis was much worse for T&T as Glasgow will now require surgery after visiting hospital in Guatemala City and will be out for up to two months. Phillips is also likely to miss out on Wednesdays clash with St Vincent while striker Cornell Glen also suffered nasty blow to his ankle and will need some luck on his side to be ready for the clash at Arnos Vale. Midfielder Arnold Dwarika too suffered a blow to a knee injury sustained earlier this year and had to be replaced by Silvio Spann in the 73rd minute.
Aside from those mishaps, T&T would have hoped to seize the early initiative playing away from home against a team that was eager to get some sort of a confidence booster going into their World Cup qualifier against Canada, and their fans were set on playing twelfth man from the start of proceedings.
Glen seemed to be a problem for the Guatemalan defense with his speed and almost created the opener for T&T in the 6th minute when he ran onto a long clearance by goalkeeper Daurance Williams before playing inside to Dwarika but he could only chip straight to the goalkeeper while confronted by three Guatemalan shirts.
Three minutes later, Rojas sent one down the left flank for Glen who outran his man but his shot was stopped by the keeper on the near post.
It was a promising sign of possible things to come for St Clairs men but the first bad stroke soon followed as Rojas was cautioned for dangerous play in the 13th minute. Then soon after putting in a winning tackle against Mario Rodriguez, Rojas ended up in a tussle with the same man and got the wrong end of the deal. His second yellow card sent him to the dressing room and St Clairs men were now forced to play on the backfoot with Anthony Rougier being asked to take up a more defensive approach to the action.
T&T still went forward just before the half hour with Dwarika trying to create for Glen with a through pass but the keeper was quick off his line to claim and then Phillips rose above the defense to head inches wide from Dwarikas right side corner.
But as the half approached, Guatemala grew in confidence and goalkeeper Williams came up huge to keep the scores deadlocked at the break.
On 32 minutes, a close range tap by Fredy Thompson was well held by an alert Williams. Then two minutes before the half, a right side ball found Jose Mendoza and his header seemed destined for the left corner of the net, only to be denied by Williams who dove full stretch to push out with his right hand.
Two minutes later it was Williams again to the rescue as he blocked Mendozas close range effort while partially off his line and the follow up effort was forced wide.
The pressure continued to mount for T&T and they found themselves a goal down in the 49th minute. Pablo Melgar was the man blasting home from inside the box.
Glasgow and Phillips then left the action and it was up to Glen to try and hit the target. He would have hoped to see Guatemala down to ten men when Keyeno Thomas played him through on the right and as he advanced goalwards, was hacked down from behind by what appeared to the last defender before the goal but only a caution was issued and the resulting free kick went to waste. Conrad Smith replaced Glen who was forced out by the tackle.
Guillermo Ramirez doubled Guatemalas lead with a stinging shot past Williams in the 72nd minute and Gonzalo Romero unleashed a bullet from outside the box which flew in off the inside right post to put the game beyond T&Ts reach.
Guatemala got a final item four minutes from the end when Walter Estrada sent a glancing header home from Dwight Pezzarossi´s cross.
T&Ts only reprieve was Smith receiving a return pass from substitute Kerry Baptiste and hitting home from close range in added on time. Coach St Clair said T&T were not strong defensively and paid the price for this.
Our problem started with losing Rojas and we never really recovered. Guatemala were a fair running team. They played several long balls and it worked for them on this occasion. The injuries were also a blow to us not having more defenders meant that paid for it as it affected our game. Losing Gary is also another blow to us because we were hoping to have him for the qualifiers, St Clair told TTFF Media.
It was a still a valuable experience for us because at the last moment we lost some of our key players and it allowed us to see what else we have to offer particularly in defense and unfortunately we ran into problems in this game. We had to shift around our defenders and this was one of our weak areas tonight. We still fought on even when we lost the player and even though we conceded four goals, there is still much to look forward to from the team and I am hopeful that the players coming in will compliment the team going into the semi final round, St Clair added. The T&T team was scheduled home on Thursday night.
T&T Line-up:1.Daurance Williams, 6.Derek King, 5.Keyeno Thomas, 2.Marlon Rojas, 3.Derek Phillips (Michael Celestine 52nd) 12.Anthony Rougier (capt), 15.Stokely Mason, 9.Arnold Dwarika (Silvio Spann 73rd) 14.Denzil Theobald (Kerry Baptiste 85th), 11.Gary Glasgow (Scott Sealy 52nd) 13.Cornell Glen (Conrad Smith, 67th).
TnT Subs Not Used: Jan Michael Williams GK - Angus Eve (Injured).
Guatemala Line-up: Ricardo Foster, Pablo Melgar, Gustavo Cabrera, Denis Chen, (A. Sanabria 81th), Néstor Martínez, (Claudio Albizuris 81st), Fredy Thompson, Gonzalo Romero, Mario Rodríguez, (Zacarías Antonio 73rd), Guillermo Ramírez, (Mynor Dávila 77th), José Mendoza, (Walter Estrada 64th), Dwight Pezzarossi, (Tránsito Montepeque 81st).
GUA 4 v TnT 1.
Pablo Melgar, Guillermo Ramirez, Gonzalo Romero, Walter Estrada.
Mateo Flores Stadium, Guatemala City.
|52' Michael Celestine|
|Marlon Rojas 13 ' 29 '|
|73' Silvio Spann|
|Anthony Rougier (capt.)|
|85' Kerry Baptiste|
|52' Scott Sealy|
|67' Conrad Smith|
|Bertille St. Clair|
|52'||Michael Celestine for Derek Phillips|
|52'||Scott Sealy for Gary Glasgow|
|67'||Conrad Smith for Cornell Glen|
|73'||Silvio Spann for Arnold Dwarika|
|85'||Kerry Baptiste for Densill Theobald|