Fri | Nov 15, 2019

Mariappa demands more of Boyz

Published:Tuesday | October 15, 2019 | 12:13 AMRobert Bailey/Gleaner Writer
Jamaica’s Shamar Nicholson (centre) in a tussle with Aruba’s Gregor Brienburg (left) and Glenbert Croes moments before netting his team’s second goal in their Concacaf Nations League game at the National Stadium on Saturday.
Jamaica’s Shamar Nicholson (centre) in a tussle with Aruba’s Gregor Brienburg (left) and Glenbert Croes moments before netting his team’s second goal in their Concacaf Nations League game at the National Stadium on Saturday.

National senior defender Adrian Mariappa says Jamaica will have to be more clinical in front of goal when they tackle Aruba in their return match in Group C of the Concacaf Nations League B in Curacao today at 6 p.m.

The Reggae Boyz, who are ranked 47th in the world, defeated the Arubans, ranked 195th, 2-0 on Saturday at the National Stadium in their first meeting through goals from midfielder Devon Williams and striker Shamar Nicholson.

Although they only had a 2-0 win, the Jamaicans dominated possession on Saturday and created many chances that were wasted. They are once again expected to have things their own way against the Arubans tonight, but Mariappa says the team must improve its quality of play in this game.

“We know that we can perform better, and at the end of the day, we have to ensure that we do that in this game,” Mariappa said.

Work to do

“We have to work on things ahead of this game because we need to be a lot better when we play away from home. We need to get the standard back up. We can’t afford to drop our standards because that is when we come into trouble. I think once we keep the standards high then our performance levels will be a product of that.

Mariappa says that while he is pleased with the Reggae Boyz’s performance so far in the competition, there is a lot more to come from the team because they have a number of good players.

“I expect big things from this squad, and we have shown that we’ve got quality and we can perform better, so we can’t take our foot off the gas. We just have to go out and perform well in each game,” he said.

The Reggae Boyz, who are unbeaten so far, lead the group with the maximum nine points from three matches. They have yet to concede a goal while scoring 12 in the group so far. Antigua and Barbuda are second in the group on six points, followed by Guyana on three and Aruba on none.