Trinidadians Errol McFarlane, Kevaughn Connell and goalkeeper Michael Woods, Guyanese Randolph Jerome and St. Vincentian Kendall Velox will not don the uniform of Sangre Grande based club DIRECTV North East Stars in the upcoming 2011-2012 TT Pro League season which begins on Friday 12 August.
Stars Head Coach Shurland David confirmed releasing the handful saying, “We’ve released five players Randolph Jerome, Errol McFarlane, Kevaughn Connell, Kendal Velox and Michael Woods, while question marks remain over some others.
“After analyzing last season and looking towards long term and based on our budget, we see the need to develop younger players,” David explained during a training session at the Ojoe Road Recreation Ground in Sangre Grande which included around ten (10) trialists on Tuesday morning.
“We are also hoping that by selecting young players from the Sangre Grande and neighbouring communities, it will help build our supporter base.”
“What we are trying to do this season is bring in younger (players). We had trials in the north-east region Mayaro, Toco, Sangre Grande etc. and out of those trials we’ve selected ten youngsters and at the end of this weekend we are hoping to pull out the best of these youngsters that will train with our first team because we are indeed looking towards the future.”
Speaking on the quality of the trialists, David said, “There are some players of good quality, but they are not accustomed to playing at the required level and we will continue to monitor them over the next week before making a decision on who gets selected.”
Jeromie Williams and Kaydion Gabriel are two young players of last season that have already been re-signed by North East Stars along with Jamaican forward Sean Fraser, brothers Anthony and Glenton Wolfe, Akiel Guevera and Keryn Navarro for the upcoming season.
David is also looking to take it up a notch this season after an impressive coaching debut with the Stars in 2010-2011, guiding the club to the Lucozade Sport Goal Shield title and reaching the Finals of the Toyota Classic and FA Trophy.
“It was a great experience for me, and most importantly the team,” said the Stars coach. “And looking at the season ahead I think we can do much better.
“We returned to the League last season (after missing 2009) and did well. And we saw a lot of areas where we can work on to be a more complete team for the new season.”
However David had one concern adding, “It looks like we may have to look abroad for a goalkeeper that can take us through the season because it’s difficult finding one locally.
We even joke that all the good local goalkeepers were born around the same time. So it may be an option that North East Stars will seek a goalkeeper and probably one or two special outfield players to add to our team for the new season.”