Trinidad and Tobago’s National Under 15 boys team completed their campaign at the Cayman Airways Invitational Under 15 Youth Cup with a 6-0 victory over the Cayman Islands National U-15 team on Sunday evening in the Grand Cayman.
The win was T&T’s first and only in their four games at the tournament which ended on Sunday with Cuba defeating Manchester City’s academy team 2-1 in the Final.
T&T had previously drawn 2-2 with Manchester City and 1-1 with DC United, but lost its second game 3-1 to Houston Dynamo which ended their hopes of advancing to the semi-finals.
On Sunday, the Russell Latapy-coached team were intent on pulling off their first win which also turned out to be their maiden victory on the international stage.
Jean Heim McFee led the onslaught with a pair of goals in the 4th and 10th minutes with Micai Peters opening the scoring in the 2nd minute. Josiah Edward struck his third goal of the tournament, to put T&T 3-0 ahead in the 7th minute as T&T stamped their authority on the hosts from early in the encounter. An own goal saw T&T take a 5-0 lead on 52 minutes before Ezekiel Kesar struck in the 54th to put Latapy’s boys in front 6-0.
Latapy later commended his players for pulling off the win in the manner in which they did.
“I must say the manner in which the boys went about the game today, in spite of being eliminated from the tournament, was pleasing and it is the kind of attitude and spirit we are continuously working on with them,” Latapy told TTFA Media.
“We played four games in less than a week out here and to see that they were motivated to go out there and put out a commanding performance in order to achieve their first win in international football was good to see. We created chances and we took them well and I think with each game we saw improvements in different areas which is what playing football matches brings, allowing you to correct mistakes and also identify areas that need to be worked on, some more than others,” the former T&T captain stated.
“We also found a group of boys who were learning new things each day, finding way to solve problems on the field, becoming mentally ready for challenges and actually going into game situations and putting things into motion.
“Now we will return home and continue with our training programme and work towards getting ourselves ready as a team for the Concacaf championship in August which is another assignment that everyone is really anticipating,” Latapy added.
The 2017 CONCACAF Boys Under-15 Championship will take place at IMG’s world-renowned campus in Bradenton, Florida.
The tournament, which will take place from August 13-19, is expected to include a record number of youth players from CONCACAF’s Member Associations in a competition format designed to provide valuable experience. All 40 eligible CONCACAF Member Associations are expected to participate.
IMG Academy sits on more than 550 acres and features more than 20 multi-sport fields, 50 tennis courts, a 5,000-seat state-of-the-art stadium, two 10,000+ square foot weight rooms and residential halls and accommodations for athletes and guests. The IMG campus provides an ideal all-around environment for CONCACAF’s under-15 teams to train and perform.
In addition to providing a world-class venue, IMG Academy will also offer training and development programming for the athletes, coaches and referees. Programming could include coaching education, athlete leadership development, referee development and cognitive and visual perception training.
Photo at top shows the T&T U-15 Starting team in Sunday’s match vs Cayman Islands.