Sun | Sep 24, 2017

Reggae Boyz on revenge mission at Gold Cup

Published:Sunday | July 9, 2017 | 7:00 AMNodley Wright
Lawrence

The Reggae Boyz will this evening seek to rebound from their disappointing loss in the final of the Caribbean Cup to Curacao when they take on the same opposition in their opening group game of the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup. Game time is 6 p.m. at the Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California.

In 2015, the last time the tournament was held, the first English-speaking Caribbean country to qualify for the World Cup achieved their best performance ever in the tournament when they lost to Mexico in the final. Another strong showing will indicate that that performance was no fluke. Before they can start thinking about that, however, they will have to get the better of this former Dutch colony.

This is something that is very important to the players, according to team manager Roy Simpson.

 

DESIRE TO DO WELL

 

"This is the biggest tournament in the confederation, so it is our desire to do very well here. We know that we owe it to ourselves and our people to correct the situation which took place in the Caribbean Cup," Simpson said, making reference to the loss in the final to Curacao.

Today's game should be a different situation as the Reggae Boyz will be a stronger, more experienced unit.

"The fact that we played against Curacao in the Caribbean Cup will be a plus for us. Also important is the fact that Curacao fielded their strongest team then and we did not. That will be another positive for us.

"For this tournament, we will benefit from the combined experience of players like (Je-Vaughn) Watson, (Dwayne) Miller, (Kemar) Lawrence, (Jermaine) Taylor, Jermaine Johnson and (Darren) Mattocks. Some of these players we had in the Caribbean Cup, but it would be good to have their collective experience now," Simpson added.

The level head that the above-mentioned players will bring, coupled with the hunger and desire of the younger players like Oniel Fisher, a man seen as the country's player of the tournament in the Caribbean Cup, and others such as Ricardo Morris, Owayne Gordon and Damion Lowe will be the recipe for success. Goalkeeper Andre Blake will also be a good addition to the squad which will go up against a unit supplemented by talent from the Netherlands.

Jamaica's squad: Andre Blake, Damion Hyatt. Dwayne Miller, Ladale Richie, Sergio Campbell, Damion Lowe, Kemar Lawrence, Shaun Francis, Oniel Fisher, Rosario Harriott, Jermaine Johnson, Shamar Nicholson, Je-Vaughn Watson, Alvas Powell, Darren Mattocks, Cory Burke, Ricardo Morris, Ewan Grandison, Michael Binns, Owayne Gordon, Jermaine Taylor, Kevon Lambert and Romario Williams.