DENNIS LAWRENCE, coach of the Trinidad and Tobago men’s football team, was pleased with his squad’s display against Martinique.
Both teams battled to a goalless draw in their friendly international on Sunday evening at Fort-de-France.
In a post-game interview, Lawrence said, “I thought it was an extremely good exercise for the both teams. I think my team tried to play, we had a better surface and I think, first half, we had a lot of good possession.
“We probably had the best chance,” continued Lawrence. “I think, in the last 15-20 minutes of the game, physically they were stronger than us. Obviously, that’s because we played 48 hours (before, against Guadeloupe), they were resting. I think it was a great credit to the boys to come out and manage to get a clean sheet against Martinique.”
Asked about his use of winger Levi Garcia as a striker against Martinique, Lawrence replied, “The idea is trying to find the right blend and that was one of the things that we were trying in these games, and I think it worked out quite well.”
He described the matches against Guadeloupe (TT won 1-0) and Martinique as “extremely beneficial”.
“I think it was part of the process that we’re doing,” said Lawrence. “I was really pleased with the entire trip.”
Trinidad and Tobago will face World Cup-bound Panama on April 17, at the Ato Boldon Stadium in Couva. However, the game will not be staged on a FIFA international date.
“I’m trying to create a competitive group,” said the TT coach. “It’ll probably be 98 percent local players. We’ll try and build from what we did here against Martinique and Guadeloupe.”
Lawrence also stressed the importance of the TT Pro League to the national set-up.
“After the Panama game, I think the focus is on trying to get the Pro League up and running because I think the strength of your national team is the strength of the league,” said the former TT central defender. “So, if we get the Pro League up and running, it helps in our development process, it helps what we’re trying to do because we need to keep the boys active, leading up to the Gold Cup next year.”