Under 20 Men win final training match in Panama

Trinidad and Tobago’s National Men’s Under 20 Team closed off it’s three-match training camp in Panama with a 3-1 victory over local club San Francisco FC at the Estadio Agustin Sanchez in La Chorrera on Monday evening.

The win was set up with goals by Central FC forward Nicholas Dillon in the 2nd minute and a double by DC United’s Taofik Lucas-Walker in the 21st and 34th minutes.

The result against the First Division Reserve League champions followed a 2-0 defeat to Panama’s Under 17 Men’s team a couple days earlier. T&T started the camp with a 2-1 win over Leones de America Reserves last Monday at the Maracana Stadium.

Team head coach Brian Williams later commented on the performance of his side, describing the third match as a proper test for his bunch.

“It was a pleasing way to end the training camp. What I saw today was satisfying in many regards. We started off quickly with the early goal from Dillon and we kept our composure and intensity level up for a great part of the match,” Williams told TTFA Media.

“It was a good result for the team as well to come back from the loss to the Panama Under 17s on Saturday. For that match, I used the opportunity to give some of the non-starters and those who haven’t been getting much playing time the chance to get a run. We missed a penalty and a few decent chances on goal,” Williams added.

“But then the boys picked up their game and pulled off a much better performance today. We have a couple days left before we head to Curacao and we will use this time to work on a couple things before the opening game against Cuba. We’ve worked on our shape and our organisation and the way we in which we’d like to defend as a team and move forward in attack as a unit. This training camp has definitely given us much needed time to get in the work before we head into the tournament,” Williams added.

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The T&T U-20 Team huddle in prayer at the Maracana Stadium in Panama City before a training session. Photo courtesy TTFA Media.

The team will arrive in Curacao on Thursday and will be joined there by North American-based trio Jacob Sooklal, Jarred Dass and Andrew Rullow.

T&T will face off with Cuba in their opening match of the Caribbean Football Union Final Round of Under 20 World Cup qualification on October 22nd in Curacao.

T&T, the CFU defending champions, have been grouped with previous runners up Haiti, Cuba and St Lucia in Group B which will be contested at the Ergilio Hato.

Following their opening game with Cuba, T&T then faces St Lucia on October 24th and Haiti on October 26th.

Group A comprises of hosts Curacao, Bermuda, St Kitts/Nevis and Antigua/Barbuda.

The top two teams will advance to the semi finals as well as gain automatic passage to the CONCACAF Final round which will be played in Costa Rica in February. The semi-finals will be played on October 28th and the final and third place match will take place on October 30th. The top five teams from the CFU Final round will advance to the CONCACAF stage.

Photo at top shows Brian Williams passing on some instructions to his players at a training session in Panama City.

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