The Trinidad & Tobago men’s senior football team ended their 2021 Gold Cup campaign with a 1-1 draw against Central Americans Guatemala on Sunday.
T&T’s top goal-scorer of the tournament, Reon Moore notched his third goal of the competition, scoring in the 12th minute with a beautifully executed left-footed shot from an Alvin Jones pass. The Soca Warriors dominated majority of the game until an unmarked Gerardo Gordillo equalized with a thumping header from a corner in the 78th minute.
Mexico topped Group A with 7 points; El Salvador who also qualified for the knockout phase placed second totaling 6 points while T&T ended with 2 points and the Guatemalans pointless.
Recapping their last match was interim head coach Angus Eve, “I was disappointed because we wanted to be on the front foot; we started that way. I thought we dominated the game first half but when we scored the goal, we never really pushed to get the second goal to kill off the game.”
The former Soca Warrior captain now coach continued, “Then, in the second half, I think the fellas went into a shell and tried to keep what they had. We were trying to drive them forward but they just kept dropping back. That was never in the plan and it’s the first time I’ve been disappointed in the group.”
Despite the disappointment of not winning their first match in the group stage, Eve was encouraged by the performances of his players. He said, “It is a learning experience and we as a team and as a staff can only be better for it. With all the challenges we had to face, I still think that we did really well. I think there is a lot to look forward from what we have done in this tournament.”
Injuries were a major setback for Eve throughout his temporary stint as head coach especially losing players at crucial times in the tournament. Another issue he faced was the lack of fitness from the players especially local players who are without a league for over a year. Eve said, “We have been talking about lack of fitness, and lack of fitness causes mental lapses. The guys just have to work on their personal fitness because we cannot do everything when they come from their club teams into the national team.”