Thu | Aug 17, 2017

Ja banking on experience for CONCACAF Beach Soccer Champs

Published:Saturday | February 18, 2017 | 2:00 AMMarc Stamp

Coach Andrew Price is counting on his experienced players to lead the team to the knockout stage in the upcoming CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championship in the Bahamas.

Price who has cut the squad to 12 from 30 players is confident that they can advance from Group A.

"We have played against the other teams in the past. We beat Belize 8-4 when the teams met in the group stage two years ago in this tournament. We also beat Guyana six years ago in the only meeting, and defeated Bahamas twice in three meetings," Price told The Gleaner yesterday ahead of the team's departure this morning.

"The final 12 are players with grit and determination. We are optimistic of reaching the quarter-final as we did two years ago, and take it from there," he added.

The 2017 CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championship will include a field of 16 teams. During the first four days of the championship, teams will compete in round-robin play in four groups of four teams each.

Group A - Bahamas, Jamaica, Belize and Guyana. Group B - Mexico, Barbados, Canada and Guadeloupe. Group C - United States, Trinidad & Tobago, Antigua and Barbuda and US Virgin Islands. Group D - El Salvador, Costa Rica, Panama and Turks & Caicos Islands.

The winners and runners-up from each group will advance to the quarter-finals.

The champions and the runners-up of the competition will join hosts Bahamas as the three CONCACAF representatives at the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Bahamas 2017, which kicks off in April.

Jamaica will open against Belize on Monday, then play against Guyana on Tuesday,and complete their group fixtures on Wednesday against hosts Bahamas.

The squad: Kirk Porter, Edsel Scott, Daemion Benjamin, Ryon Powell, Gerald Neil, Michily Waul, Derrick Planter, Andre Reid, Jermain Anderson, Rohan Reid, Gregory Simpson and Phillip Peddie.