T&T football coach Stephen Hart confessed he felt his team was disappointing in several aspects of their play in the Group C Concacaf semi-final round World Cup qualifying match against the USA.
T&T went down 0-4 to the Americans at EverBank Field, Jacksonville, Florida, on Tuesday.
“The reactions to this is the good thing that we are in the hex but I was extremely disappointed tonight (Tuesday),” Hart said.
“I was very disappointed in the quality of our passing, our general lack of movement and we were second best to every ball tonight and it showed with three of the goals. We gave away the ball with sloppy passing and USA were breaking with energy and in numbers. And that’s the result you get when you make mistakes at this level,” Hart said.
“We were looking okay in the first-half but I would not say we were very good. We weren’t getting any shots on net and then we gave up a sort of unfortunate goal. We just made way too many errors tonight.
“We have the Caribbean Cup in October. I think I have to look very closely at the selection going into the Caribbean Cup and we have to realise that we have some soul searching to do. Tonight some of the big players would have to answer for it because our leaders tonight…far too many of them... disappeared,” Hart added.
Captain Kenwyne Jones added: “It’s not a good way to end the semifinal round and we did not put forward that performance tonight that we needed to have. We let ourselves down majorly and I think we let the staff down as a team on a whole and more importantly we let the country down by the performance that we put in.”
However, Jones who is loan to local T&T Pro League club Central FC from US Major League Soccer expansion team Atlanta United, felt the result may bring out a positive response from the team.
He added: “I do think tonight (Wednesday) itself is a blessing in disguise to give us that wake-up call that we need to get back to the things that we were doing well and hopefully put that into practice at the right moment in the hex.”
Reflecting on the match, the former England-based Jones said: “We had it together in the first half until they scored. I don’t think they really had a shot on goal, or maybe one and then second-half we came away from what we were doing in the first-half and totally lost the organisation and shape and from there it went uphill.
“Again its down to our desire to up our game and be organised and discipline as we were at the beginning of the game and to maintain that for the best part of the game and not fall away from it.
“But as I said again its probably a blessing in disguise for us to stir up the consciousness and get back to what we were doing before.”
Looking ahead to the final round where T&T will compete with USA, Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama and Honduras from November 11 for three automatic spots to Russia and a fourth spot to a playoff the 31-year-old Jones said each player has to improve, including himself.
“It’s just about working on ourselves first in the meantime before we get together for the hex or the Caribbean Cup matches. At the international level you don’t get enough time with your teammates so the most you can do to better yourself or make yourself more consistent in the meantime and come back and try again and put things together in the right way.
“So for everyone I think we are going to go away and have a little look at our ourselves and see what we need to get better, make stronger, and come back again.”
Asked if he was already thinking about the team’s first match at home against Costa Rica, Jones replied, “Well not yet its still a couple months away and at the same time, we are fresh off this game tonight. We have to go over the positives and negatives before we start thinking about Costa Rica.
He added: “I’m pretty sure we are going to have to dust ourselves off and start coming up with the strategy for the hex as we know its home and away, so we have to have a different strategy for away, than we would have at home. Hopefully the staff will get together and then the team and we will be all fine.”