Wed | Jan 16, 2019

Big day for Under-17s

Published:Sunday | March 15, 2015 | 12:00 AMRobert Bailey
Andrew Edwards


Jamaica's head coach, Omar Edwards, said there will be no holding back when the young Reggae Boyz tackle the United States of America (USA) for a spot in the 2015 FIFA Under-17 World Cup today.

Both teams will face off in the CONCACAF play-off game at the Estadio Olimpico Metropolitano in San Pedro Sula in Honduras, starting at 6 p.m. (Ja time).

The young Reggae Boyz gave themselves a chance for glory when they finished second in the CONCACAF Under-17 Championship Group A on 10 points, behind Honduras (11). USA also finished on 10 points, but Jamaica ended ahead of the Americans after beating them 1-0 on Wednesday.

However, with Honduras winning one automatic spot to the World Cup, Jamaica and the USA enter the play-off from Group A. Mexico have also qualified for the World Cup after winning Group B, ahead of Canada and Costa Rica.


calm and focused


With the automatic spots decided, two play-offs will decide the last two qualifiers for the World Cup from the CONCACAF region.

Costa Rica will face Canada in the first play-off at 3 p.m., to be followed by Jamaica versus USA, three hours later. In the final game, hosts Honduras will square-off against Mexico for the championship title.

"We are confident,"said Edwards. "The boys are very positive so we have to keep them calm and focused."

Edwards added that he is expecting a very tough game from the USA.

"We will be making some changes to the starting team that played on Wednesday," Edwards said. "In that game, several top Jamaican players were rested including captain Shandel Senior, midfielder Alex Marshall and forward Nathaniel Adamolekun, who has netted three goals so far.

The Americans will rely on top goalscorers Joe Gallardo and Joshua Perez. Both players enter the game with four goals apiece.