Tue | May 22, 2018

Under-17s 'confident in winning' CFU group qualifier

Published:Wednesday | July 13, 2016 | 12:00 AMMarc Stamp
Patrick King (centre), director of customer solutions, Digicel, and members of the national Under-17 football team, celebrate during a FIFA tournament game at the Digicel headquarters in downtown Kingston. The team made a courtesy call at the Digicel Headquarters, just ahead of their departure to the US Virgin Islands today.

Jamaica's Under-17 men's football team will depart the island today at 7:25 a.m. to participate in Group Four of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) Qualifiers in the US Virgin Islands.

The Jamaicans will play alongside hosts US Virgin Islands, Guyana and Antigua. Six groups will play in the qualifiers, with the group

winners advancing to the Caribbean finals in Trinidad and Tobago on September 16-25.

Jamaica will open their campaign against Guyana this Friday, then take on Antigua two days later and conclude the group stage against the US Virgin Island next Tuesday.

Coach of the Jamaica team, Andrew Edwards, is confident they will advance.




"We started initial preparation in December, then decided on a pool of 40 players. We worked with the players during weekend camps and selected the best 20 players," Edwards told The Gleaner yesterday. Jamaica failed to engage in international practice games, but Edwards says that should not affect the team during the group stage.

"We have to be satisfied with the level of preparation. It wasn't ideal as we had no international practice games, but it won't be a setback at this stage," he added.

"I understand that Guyana started preparations some two weeks ago.

"However, we are focused on our preparations. We are confident in winning the group and advancing to the finals, but not taking anything for granted," Edwards disclosed.

"The global football landscape has changed, so we have to go out there and play each game hard," he concluded.

The team will be led by Jeremy Verley of St George's College.

The squad is: Daniel Russell, Kendall Edwards, Romario McPherson, Jeremy Verley, Jamoi Topay, Nickache Murray, Khaeem Parris, Cobi Atkinson, Raewin Senior, Renato Campbell, Omar Thompson, Kimani Gibbons, Tajay Griffiths, Thriston Briscoe, Jordan Peterkin, Blake White, Casseam Priestly, Damanai Osei, Calwayne Allen and Chad Letts.