‘We must win’ - Coley says Reggae Boyz must deliver in Haiti after 2-0 surrender to Panama
Having pinpointed a number of areas where Jamaica's Reggae Boyz failed to deliver in Friday night's 2-0 surrender to Panama at the National Stadium, assistant coach Miguel Coley conceded a painful defeat, but said there will be no 'licking of wounds' as his charges will go all out to bounce back against Haiti on Wednesday.
The Jamaicans failed to convince in Friday night's opening game of their semi-final campaign in the CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying match and watched as Panama cruised to three points in Group B of the round robin phase.
Armando Cooper, with a 42nd minute free kick and a Wes Morgan own goal, subjected Jamaica to defeat.
Elsewhere, Costa Rica also won three points to share leadership in the group, following their 1-0 win over Haiti, who, like Jamaica, are without a point.
"In terms of Panama, over the years, it is not a team that we have done so well against. It's not about underestimating them. Panama has always got a good result from us, so it is a team that we wanted to beat more than anything else. They have now scored four set pieces against us, and it's not about underestimating any team whatsoever. It's football and we have to go out there and fight, and Panama is one of those teams that we needed to win against," Coley stressed.
"They have beaten us at home and we now have to get a good result in Haiti."
The Reggae Boyz, who once played at 'The Office' like world champions in years gone by, have now suffered successive defeats at the venue at the hands of Nicaragua (3-2) and now Panama.
"We want to protect this field, it means a lot to us. It's a lot of pressure the guys go under out there, they want to do well here. Needless to say it was a bad performance and going to Haiti we know that it's a must win, it's a tough group and we have to do good and win," Coley continued.
Only the top two teams will advance to the six-nation Hexagonal that ultimately decides the qualifiers for the 2018 World Cup Finals in Russia.
"It's a tough loss; in the first-half I don't think we played that much cohesive. The Panamanians came here and they pressed us, we didn't create the best chances as possible in the first-half," assessed Coley.
"In the second half the intent was to go out there and get back the goal. But we conceded an own goal and in the last 20 minutes of time we pushed and tried to get that goal, but it wasn't to be,"
Added Coley, who was in charge of the team in the absence of head coach Winfried Schäfer, who was serving a one-match FIFA ban.
He remains buoyed by his team's communication out on the pitch and said they "will improve".