|WARRIORS PREPARE FOR SUNDAY'S FRIENDLY VS BARBADOS|
|National Team head coach Francisco Maturana, back from meetings with some of this country’s UK-based professionals in London earlier this week, will have a final opportunity before the England friendly to see some more of what his home-based players have to offer in Sunday’s warm up international against Barbados at the Marvin Lee Stadium from 6pm.
Maturana will resume training on Friday with a fully local-based outfit as French-based striker Kevaughn Connell is unable to make the trip due to club commitments. Following Sunday’s match, Maturana is expected to finalize his squad for the June 1 encounter with England which will include some more of the overseas-based players.
That same squad will also be together for the June 7 friendly against Jamaica at the Queen’s Park Oval and the opening 2010 World Cup qualifier against Bermuda on June 15 at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.
Skipper Aurtis Whitley will again lead the team with the rest of the squad from the 2-0 win over Grenada returning along with three recalls in W Connection defender Kern Cupid, striker Jamal Gay and Clico Jabloteh forward Lester Peltier.
Maturana is treating the friendly with the respect it deserves as Barbados will coming with serious intent as they prepare for a World Cup qualifier against Concacaf giants United States next month.
“This is an important game just like the others because we are using it to prepare for the World Cup qualification and also the England match that everybody is now talking about,” Maturana told TTFF Media.
“When you have a game like this one against Barbados you have to be serious and play to your best because only when you do this then you can be ready with everything for the bigger matches. I need my players to show me that they can perform at a high level because Barbados will not come to play easily and so we have to keep a good standard. There must be no other way,” he added.
Barbados coach Eyre Sealy says his team is focused on the task ahead of them and they expect to have some overseas-based players for their qualifiers.
“We have some good young talent coming up here on the island and they represent a good future for us. But the availability of some foreign-based professionals is massive to our hopes. We have made contact with a number of guys in England so far and we are hoping and waiting to hear back."
f availability and choice conspire in Sealy's favour, the squad could have more than 11 players from overseas professional leagues, this after the Barbadian FA spent significant time and moneys trying to locate first generation Barbadians living and playing abroad.
Among those contacted is one Marlon Harewood of Aston Villa, a 50-plus goal-getter and FA Cup finalist during his time with West Ham. Described by Sealy as "an outstanding player," the powerful big striker has three goals for the Villains this term and is widely respected in the Premiership for his pace and raw power. He has never played for Barbados, but at the age of 27, Harewood's hopes of earning a cap for the country of his birth, England, are growing slim.
According to fifa.com also contacted by the Barbados FA are Emerson Boyce of Wigan Athletic, Louie Soares (Aldershot Town) and his brother Tom of Crystal Palace. Paul Ifill (also of Crystal Palace), Mark McCammon (Doncaster Rovers) and Neil Harvey (Retford United), all three of whom represented Barbados in last year's Digicel Caribbean Cup finals, are expected to be in the squad. Barbados last defeated Dominica 1-0 in its previous World Cup qualifier in March.
Prior to Sunday’s feature game, the Eastern Football Association will kick off with a 3pm match between WASA FC and Malabar FC. (S Fuentes, May 7, 2008)
1.Marvin Phillips - W.Connection
2.Glenroy Samuel – Under 20s
3.Aklie Edwards - Defence Force
4.Kareem Smith - United Petrotrin
5.Anton Pierre - Defence Force
6.Keyeno Thomas - Joe Public
7.Makan Hislop - United Petrotrin
8.Akeem Adams – W Connection
9.Khaleem Hyland - Unattached
10.Stephan David - Caledonia AIA
11.Autis Whitley - W. Connection
12.Atulla Guerra – CLICO Jabloteh
13. Kern Cupid – W Connection
14.Keon Daniel - United Petrotrin
15.Kevon Carter Defence Force
16.Lester Peltier - Jabloteh
17.Jamal Gay – Under 20s
18.Jerrol Forbes - United Petrotrin