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T&T vs Panama (08-Oct-2005).
Sun Oct 30, 2005 08:23
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T&T pull it off.
By: Shaun Fuentes.


The sounds of iron and the bliss of white overtook the Estadio Rommel Fernandez Stadium at around 9:50pm on Saturday night as Stern John's 62nd minute winner gave Trinidad and Tobago's senior footballers a hard earned 1-0 win over Panama and kept the Warriors' dreams of a place in Germany 2006 alive.
The game turned out to be, as expected, a gruelling one for skipper Dwight Yorke and his men on a slushy surface but the never say die attitude once again crept into T&T's play and they pulled off the win to move to 10 points, two ahead of Guatemala which lost 5-2 away to Mexico.
John made no mistake shooting home from inside the box after Leo Beenhakker introduced Kenwyne Jones who was heavily involved in the play leading to the goal. Panama pressed too and forced T&T on the backfoot, particularly in the first half. John also missed a close chance after the break.
Those results now mean that T&T can go through to the playoffs if Guatemala lose outright or draw at home to Costa Rica on Wednesday. But the safest thing now would be a win for T&T over Mexico at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.
"It's definitely a win for the nation as you can see our fans were here most present tonight," Yorke said after the win. He had'nt even left the field yet as he was able to put an even bigger smile on his face on learning the result in Mexico.
"It means now that we have it all to play for and a win will seal it for us. It's an amazing feeling for the guys to keep this momentum going with such a hard win tonight and now it's just up to us to seal it on Wednesday against the Mexicans," Yorke said.
Goalscorer John was pleased but the look on his face could tell that it was a difficult night in Panama City.
"I know you think I miss too many chances before I score," he told TTFF Media as he out his T&T wristband on in the dressing room after the win. "But football is 90 minutes and the score at the end of it is what matters."
T&T head coach Leo Beenhakker added "I've under this pressure for 40 years so I'm used to it," referring obviously to how tense the evening turned out.
"It's a good win for us. Let's get it on against the Mexicans now," he added.
The T&T team rushed off to the Riande Aeropuerto Hotel for dinner and then take the three-minute drive to the airport to join the band of T&T fans on the BWIA charter flight home.
Warriors time to vibes it up.
By: Shaun Fuentes.


“Yes!! Vibes it up fellas”
That’s the line which came repeatedly from midfielder Russell Latapy in the dressing room moments after this country’s hardfought 1-0 victory over Panama at the Estadio Rommel Fernandez on Saturday night which kept the “Warriors” right in the race for fourth spot in the 2006 World Cup qualifying bid.
“I like how we vibes them up. Now is time to vibes it up again on Wednesday. The whole country have to vibes it up,” Latapy continued as he and the rest of the team embraced Saturday’s win but it was obvious that they knew the task was far from completed with Wednesday’s next crucial match up against Mexico on their minds. There were the obvious smiles and shake hands but it was not a case of over celebrating as the team boarded the BWIA charter flight with the fans which landed at Piarco International Airport at 6am on Sunday following the three-hour direct flight on which FIFA Vice President Jack Warner, President George Maxwell Richards and other TTFF officials also traveled. Richards also walked down the aisle to greet the players moments after the flight left the ground on its way back to Trinidad.
Latapy’s “Vibes it up” line has been echoed by his teammates during the one week live in camp in Panama and is one they have adopted as they go about their preparations both on and off the pitch on the “Journey to Germany” campaign.
The sounds of Iron from Laventille Rhythm Section and Woodbrook Playboys and the radiance of the T&T fans and players in white overtook the venue at around 9:50 pm on Saturday night as Stern John's 62nd minute winner sealed the three points.
The game turned out to be, as expected, a grueling one for skipper Dwight Yorke and his men on a slushy surface but the never say die attitude once again crept into T&T's play and they pulled off the win to move to 10 points, two ahead of Guatemala which lost 5-2 away to Mexico.
John made no mistake shooting home from inside the box after Leo Beenhakker introduced Kenwyne Jones who was heavily involved in the play leading to the goal. Panama pressed too and forced T&T on the backfoot, particularly in the first half. John also missed a close chance after the break.
Those results now mean that T&T can go through to the playoffs if Guatemala lose outright or draw at home to Costa Rica on Wednesday. But the safest thing now would be a win for T&T over Mexico at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.
"It's definitely a win for the nation as you can see our fans were here most present tonight," Yorke told TTFF Media after the win. He hadn’t even left the field yet as he was able to put an even bigger smile on his face on learning the result in Mexico.
President George Maxwell Richards meeting the team on the flight back home.
"It means now that we have it all to play for and a win will seal it for us. It's an amazing feeling for the guys to keep this momentum going with such a hard win tonight and now it's just up to us to seal it on Wednesday against the Mexicans," Yorke said.
Goalscorer John was pleased but the look on his face could tell that it was a difficult night in Panama City.
"I know you think I miss too many chances before I score," he told TTFF Media as he out his T&T wristband on in the dressing room after the win. "But football is 90 minutes and the score at the end of it is what matters. This goal was also for ‘Blacks’ (Mickey Trotman) because I dedicated my left foot to him when he died and the goal came from that side tonight.”
T&T head coach Leo Beenhakker added "I've under this pressure for 40 years so I'm used to it," referring obviously to how tense the evening turned out.
"It's a good win for us. Let's get it on against the Mexicans now," he added.
Yorke continued: “It certainly put us in a good stead. It wasn’t easy out there for sure. We came and did the job that was required. It wasn’t pretty at times. As we say in football sometimes it doesn’t always have to be pretty but the result is what’s important. It was important because you always tend to look for guidance and you tend to look up to senior players which is what I think myself and Russell and some of the other guys have been able to do. They all knew exactly what we need to do which was a professional job despite the conditions of the pitch.”
The Sydney FC captain added that he has seen ongoing growth in the team since he returned to the line up in February for the opening match of the final round against the United States.
“The team is certainly grown from the time I joined it over a period of four months. You can see that there is a good spirit among the players and good understanding as well. Everyone wants to achieve the same thing. Results give you confidence and we proved that tonight. The important thing is the team is going in the right direction. Everyone who has been around the team as you have been will see how good the spirit is and that means that you don’t always have to have all the talent but there are people who are willing to run the extra mile and do things for others that can take you a long way,” Yorke added.
The players checked in to the Crowne Plaza on Sunday morning and had the day to themselves before assembling again at 4:30pm before training half hour later at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.

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