Trinidad and Tobago’s men’s U20 football team coach Brian Haynes wants his charges to capitalise on their chances in front of goal.
Haynes made these remarks following TT’s 3-1 friendly loss to Jamaica U20s at Larry Gomes Stadium in Malabar on Thursday. This was the second friendly between both nations in one week, with TT having won the first tie 3-2.
Haynes described Jamaica’s three first-half goals as “ten minutes of madness” for his team but believes there is still ample time to correct their mistakes ahead of this month’s Concacaf U20 Championship qualifiers.
“It’s something I take the blame for, not the players. I need to prepare them enough to be ready for any game they play. When you play a game one week ago and you win 3-2, you think ‘this is an easy game’ and here comes the three chances and they (Jamaica) put away theirs.
“We missed the first chance of the game when one of our players slipped and didn’t get the chance on goal, and those things mount up, and teams get momentum when you miss chances.
“And I already told them more than once, when you miss your chances you give the team another chance to go forward, and it becomes harder on us,” he said.
Haynes said their first-half performances, at times, were “choppy” and “sporadic” and he wanted to see more consistency. He praised a renewed effort in the second period and used this game as a learning experience for his troops.
“But life goes on, things happen and we have to learn from that. They’re a good cohesive group, even though the result didn’t go their way, no one pointed fingers at each other and I like that bout them,” he added.
Moving forward, U20 team members will play no part in the festivities over Carnival next weekend as they begin a six-day training camp on Friday.
During this camp, Haynes has organised a friendly match with some of the locally-based senior players to test the team’s mettle ahead of the Concacaf qualifiers.
TT begin their quest through the qualifiers on February 23 and are grouped with Canada, Dominica and St Vincent and the Grenadines. TT play all their matches at Hasely Crawford Stadium in Mucurapo. Only the group winner advances to the Concacaf Men's U20 Championship.
Looking ahead, Haynes said, “We must take care of making sure that we don’t give up easy chances and making sure that we fight for our chances to get it back. I know it’s in the guys, it’s just in a place where they are going to have to understand chances are not going to come all the time but when they come, we have to keep working hard.
“I talk to all these players because they’re good young men. While we didn’t win the (second) game, the experience they got is something that we cannot do in practice.”