George Romano hospitalised: Central FC director of Women’s Football and Youth Development suffers stroke

George Romano, Central FC director of Women’s Football and Youth Development.
Thursday 19 February 2015

Former Trinidad and Tobago international and present Central FC director or Women’s Football and Youth Development, George Romano, is currently hospitalised at West Shore Medical in Cocorite, Port of Spain after suffering a stroke last week Thursday during a function at his alma mater, Belmont Secondary.

Now, one week later, the 64-year-old former United States based Romano is said to be improving while his club is on standby to assist in his full recovery.

“The prognosis is quite good,” Central FC managing director Kevin Harrison said this week. “He is moving his arms and so on and we continue to wish him a speedy recovery. Once he is out of hospital we will provide him with the necessary physiotherapy on the road to his full recovery.”

Harrison explained that Vance Gabriel, CEO of Central FC’s main sponsor, Bankers Insurance, was also present at the school’s function, being a former student himself, and assisted in getting Romano to the Port of Spain General Hospital. Two days later Romano was moved to the private facility of West Shore Medical.

Romano had joined Central in February 2014 after spending three decades in the United States. Romano – who served T&T at Under-17 and Senior levels – spent two years with professional outfit New York Apollos in the American Soccer League.

Upon retirement as a player, Romano threw himself into coaching and, over more than 20 years, built an impressive reputation in the world of US soccer. A United States Soccer Federation and National Soccer Coaches Association of America licensed certified coach, Romano progressed through various football programmes to become State Coach for the New Jersey State Youth Soccer Association and Olympic Development Programme, as well as taking a high school soccer team to the Pennsylvania state finals.

Last August, at age 46, now former Defence Force head coach Ross Russell – also a former Trinidad and Tobago international – suffered a minor stroke and was warded at West Shore Medical but has since then recovered and is currently serving as an assistant coach with the T&T Under-17 Men’s team in Panama, preparing for the CONCACAF Under-17 Championship/FIFA Under-17 World Cup 2015 qualifiers in Honduras.

In February of last year Defence Force and Trinidad and Tobago winger Kevon Carter died of a heart attack at just age 30, following a training session at the Defence Force Macqueripe Base.

At the time, the Trinidad and Tobago football fraternity was still trying to come to terms with the loss of 22-year-old national footballer Akeem Adams.

Adams had suffered a massive heart attack in Hungary following a training session with his club Ferencváros TC on September 25, and after three months of battling to stay alive and four live-saving surgeries in Budapest, died on December 30, two days after suffering a severe stroke