RICHARD HOOD, coach of the TT Under-20 women’s football team, expressed his disappointment after the squad were beaten 4-0 on Wednesday by Mexico in the CONCACAF Under-20 Women’s Championships, in the Dominican Republic.
“It was a tough game,” said Hood. “I thought the girls gave their all and they tried their best. We attempted to frustrate the Mexicans as much as possible… defending deep. We reorganised our defence, playing three central defenders and I think that the plan worked to a point. I think conceding that goal just before the half was a bit deflating.
“But I compliment the girls on their efforts tonight and throughout the tournament. I don’t think they had anything left in them tonight following their efforts. I am pleased with the overall performance and where these girls came from in a very short time and the maturity and determination they showed to try and work towards the plan we devised for them.”
Hood said there were promising signs from this bunch indicating that there were a few women’s team potentials in it.
“I think that some of these girl are definitely future national women players. I would say certainly Sarah De Gannes and Afiyah Cornwall are two standout players that can go on to represent our women’s team in the future and there are others. Of course they need to develop their skills, fitness levels and their tactical awareness and this is very much dependent on what the TTFA (TT Football Association) does from now on.
“It is up to the TTFA develop these players. The clubs can’t do it, the schools definitely can’t do it. We need to have a continuous programme with the players training at a high level and playing international games on a regular basis as well.”
The coach said he is maintaining hopes that a programme will be implemented to continue the development of the Women’s pool.
“I am hopeful we can continue to build because we have seen what these girls were able to accomplish over a short time with the opportunities presented such as a training camp before the tournament. It is very much dependent on investment. Of course it cannot be done without a substantial investment into the programme for instance to get the foreign-based players on a more regular basis, to get international games and to have local and foreign camps,” he said.