PORT OF SPAIN:The
Trinidad and Tobago Soca Warriors regained some of their
much needed confidence in time for their World Cup
qualifier against Bermuda this weekend after their 1-1
tie with Jamaica Reggae Boyz in their Rhythm Clash
rematch last Saturday at the Marvin Lee Stadium in
Heading into Rhythm Clash II the Warriors was coming off
a demoralizing 3-0 domination by what many felt was a
second string England team last weekend while the Reggae
Boyz was coming off an impressive 5-1 victory over St
Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) at the office in
Surprisingly the Rhythm Clash rematch was not a well
attended event, but though the turnout was small the
game is still alive and well for no one would not have
been able to tell that the stadium was only 30% full
since the fans inside were very loud and the large
Rhythm Section in the stands set the tone from the
This was the type of game which I was expecting in the
team’s first encounter in Jamaica but the Soca Warriors
was not competitive then due to a lack of personnel and
was it not for their determination the final result
could have been embarrassing.
However his rematch was competitive and highly
entertaining as the two teams went toe to toe and unlike
the first game there was no doubt that the Warriors had
step up to the occasion and the fact that Warriors coach
Maturana was under enormous pressure for his team poor
showing against England was well received.
Coach Maturana took matters into his hands and made some
major move. One of his moves that was quite popular with
the T&T supporters was the inclusion of Jason Scotland
among has four changes which he made to his starting
Maturana brought in 17 year old Akilie Edwards and
Kareem Smith for Kern Cupid and Ancil Farrier and
inserted Keon Daniels and Jason Scotland for the injured
Kenwyne Jones and Stern John.
the side Reggae Boyz coach Rene Simoes did not want to
take any chances with this rematch after he was chastise
for his bench mismanagement in the first game although
his team was coming off a big win over SVG.
This match had more of the makings of a “Score to
Settle” than the England game and after the coaches made
their changes, the players in turn had to make some
major adjustments when the rain fell just as the game
got started to make the artificial turf very slick.
The Soca Warriors adapted to the slick field much faster
than the Reggae Boyz and as a result settle down quicker
and took the action to the Reggae Boy early and often.
With the territorial edge early in the game the Reggae
Boyz defense stood firm across the back and quickly and
used their acquired confidence to initiate the Reggae
Boyz offense with several dangerous counter attacks by
Marlon King and company.
the game now at a torrid pace and both teams counter the
other offensively the Soca Warriors capitalize on a
defensive give away on the left flank which the Warriors
ended with a nice shot of the left boot of Khaleem
Hyland at the 30 minute after a couple of nifty passes.
Jamaica changed gears after conceding the goal and
responded immediately from the touch off by increasing
the regularity of their offensive thrusts and the Soca
Warriors defense responded and was up to the task to
allow the Warriors to go into the half leading 1-0.
The game intensified in the second half with the Reggae
Boyz pressing for the equalizer and the Soca Warriors
looking to relieve the pressure and looking for the
insurance goal based on the game clock.
Jamaica got the break they were looking for when they
were awarded a penalty at the 89 minute that Luton
Shelton converted to give the Reggae Boyz the 1-1 tie.
The penalty was called after Warrior goalkeeper Clayton
Ince slid along the turf to collect a cross from the
right side and made contact with Shelton.
Soccer Update: Jamaica Reggae Boyz was upset by
Grenada 2-1 in their last International friendly before
their second round of the CONCACAF World Cup qualifier
against Bahamas at the "Office" in Kingston.
Warriors shock Reggae
Boyz in Rhythm Clash
The long awaited soccer Rhythms Clash between Trinidad
and Tobago Soca Warriors and Jamaica Reggae Boyz turned
out to be a “ Soca Warriors shocker in Jamaica”. In a
game where the Reggae Boyz dominated for over 70 minutes
of play, Trinidad and Tobago lived up to their Warriors
image by picking up a late tempo to score two goals to
secure a surprising 2-2 tie in extra time.
result of the Rhythm Clash was a favorable one for the
Soca Warriors and probably a blessing in disguise for
the disappointed Reggae Boyz, when you factor in the
inexperience of the T&T team and the sudden withdrawal
of their key players. Reggae Boyz on the other hand
would have to learn that the game is played for 90+
minutes and a slim 2 goal lead is erasable.
However from my vantage point the Reggae Boyz performed
to their level of physical readiness in the first half
of the game, but it could be argued that their mental
toughness may be in question and unfortunately for
Jamaica coach Rene Simoes it was public knowledge that
Trinidad and Tobago had a young and inexperience roster
especially with the absence of Kenwyne Jones, Carlos
Edwards and Collin Samuel.
am of the belief that Rene Simoes mistake had more to do
with his assessment of Coach Maturana T&T team
resiliency. With an attainable 2-0 half time advantage,
coach Simoes replaced goalkeeper Donavan Ricketts and
captain Marlon King at the break.
Simoes big mistake was replacing striker Marlon King
since King was the player that had the young Warriors
defender in a mess with his running off the ball. When
he was in the game the T&T defenders had no idea where
he was and where he was going to which for the most part
was behind the Warriors defense to receive his passes.
After the early tentative minutes the Reggae Boyz broke
the game open with an effective and entertaining
offensive display after missing a few chances. Marlon
King opened the scoring for Reggae Boyz at the 34th
minute on text book turn around shot after getting the
inside position on his defender.
Reggae Boyz fans erupted on the goal and the Rhythm
football show had began on the expense of a number of
last minute tackles and switch coverage by the T&T
defense. The Reggae Boyz fans were buzzing with
excitement and licking their chops in anticipation of a
add to the celebration (TFC own) Reggae Boyz right back
Tyrone Marshall out muscled his opposing defender to
beat goalkeeper Jan Williams to give Jamaica a 2-0 lead
at the 40th minute that held up into the
nature of the second goal must have given Jamaica coach
Simoes a false sense of security as he inserted, Deon
Burton for Marlon King at halftime and Tyrone Marshall
was given the captain’s armband.
Goalkeeper Barrett was also replaced in the Reggae Boyz
net with Duwayne Kerr which in reality was a change at
both ends of their defense, and although Jamaica
continued their dominance at the start of the second
half, their vertical game appeared to have an underlying
hint of showboating which spurred the Soca Warriors to
firm up in an effort not to be embarrassed.
a result T&T clawed back into the contest and was
rewarded when substitute Osei Telesford broke free on
the right from a head-on pass from Roberts to sizzle a
shot past goalkeeper Duwayne Kerr. The goal stunned the
Reggae Boyz supporters at the “Office” who at the 74th
minute mark were already leaving with what they thought
was a Jamaica win in the bag.
suddenly at the announcement of two minutes play of
extra time by the fourth official, lightening struck and
this time the ”Office” crowd was shock. Warriors captain
Aurtis Whitley eluded a Reggae Boyz defender on a fail
defensive clearance and unleashed a 25 yard left footer
that deflected slightly to beat the goalkeeper into the
net to give the Soca Warriors a 2-2 tie. The equalizer
sent the small contingent of Warriors fans into a frenzy
much to the disappointment of the faithful Reggae Boyz
the press conference, Reggae Boyz Technical Director
Simoes was under pressure and admitted “When things are
not going good, it is me the coach that everybody will
look at. It was my decision to make the changes... it
was my decision to take out Marlon King and put in Deon
Even JFF President Burrell voiced his opinion at the
press conference “I, too, am disappointed, to say the
least. It was very unfortunate that we did not win the
game, but when you looked carefully at what happened,
you would have seen that in the first half we had our
more experienced players on the pitch.
'But one has to also understand... that there are
players that the coach must look at with World Cup
qualifiers just around the corner in June,' Burrell
Meanwhile, Trinidad's assistant coach Anton Corneal was
not at a lost for words as he praised his young side for
a gutsy second-half performance. Trinidad and Tobago and
Jamaica will play Bahamas and Bermuda respectively in
their World Cup qualifying game on June 14 and 21-22 in
a home and away series