class="gkFeaturedItemTitle" Sebro named in Warriors 18-man squad to face Peru; goalkeeper Williams out
NEWCOMER, Defence Force right winger Jemel Sebro has been named in Trinidad and Tobago’s 18-man squad that will contest visiting Peru in next Wednesday’s highly anticipated friendly international at the Ato Boldon Stadium from 8pm.
The 23 year old Sebro was part of Defence Force’s 2010-11 Digicel Pro League Championship winning squad as a rookie. Now two seasons later his name is a regular fixture and valuable asset for Coach Ross Russell and assistant Marvin Gordon as the ‘Soldiers’ (28 points) lead the 2012-13 League table 8 points ahead of their closest challenger, Caledonia AIA (20 points).
While Sebro was named as the lone ‘Warriors’ newcomer, T&T captain and goalie Jan Michael Williams was only listed outside the 18-man squad.
Following a between T&T co-head coaches Hutson Charles and Jamaal Shabazz at the TTFF headquarters in Woodbrook on Thursday, a squad inclusive of 6 overseas-based players and 12 home-based professionals was revealed.
Unattached goalkeeper Jan Michael Williams who captained the team during the Caribbean Cup Finals has only been invited as a third goalkeeper to train with the squad. While defender Seon Power currently in Thailand seeking a foreign professional contract was unavailable for selection.
Head coach Shabazz explained that the decision to leave Williams out of the 18-man squad had nothing to do with the goalie’s recent fall out and spilt with now former club DIRECTV W Connection, but rather due to his lack of playing time between the uprights in recent weeks.
“We took a decision not to include Jan Michael based only on the fact that he has not been active in matches in recent weeks and as a goalkeeper it’s crucial that the player is active on regular basis. At this point we felt it would be better to go with Marvin Phillip and Cleon John. Jan has been the team captain and remains a huge part of our plans and will definitely be considered for upcoming friendlies leading up to the Gold Cup,” Shabazz told TTFF Media.
In an interview with Wired868, a disappointed Williams, 28, said he accepted the reasons given by Charles.
“Obviously I’m extremely disappointed but I support the coach,” he said. “If they had picked me, I would have been happy to play but I understand that they are trying to make the selection process more fair and I support it 100 percent. Nobody should be exempted.
“Football is not about the past, it is about the present. And at present I am not playing for a club.
“I’m upset to be missing put on such an important game but I’m happy for the chance that Cleon (John) and Marvin (Phillip) are getting.”
The home-based professionals selected include goalkeepers Marvin Phillip (Central FC) and Cleon John (North East Stars), Daniel Cyrus (W Connection), Aubrey David, Ataullah Guerra, Keon Edwards and Densill Theobald (Caledonia AIA), Curtis Gonzales, Devorn Jorsling, Kevon Carter and Sebro (Defence Force) and Kareem Moses (North East Stars).
Meantime Kenwyne Jones (Stoke City, England), Sheldon Bateau (KV Mechelen, Belgium), Darryl Roberts (Samsunspor, Turkey), Khaleem Hyland (Racing Genk, Belgium), Carlos Edwards (Ipswich Town, England) and Carlyle Mitchell (Vancouver Whitecaps, Canada) make up the list of foreign based internationals.
Looking at the game ahead and the squad selected, Shabazz added: “It’s a game that we are using as a tester. It’s fortunate that Peru are preparing for a must win World Cup qualifier against Chile which means they will be bringing their best likely team. It gives us a chance to answer questions about our squad and our players as a group and the methods we are using at this stage. Our performance in this game is going to tell us the type of work that is necessary and how far we off we might currently be following a lay off from the international stage.
“It think it’s a very exciting moment for the partnership of the coaching staff and a huge test for our players because playing Caribbean players is one level and there is a comfort zone for us there but now we have gone outside of that by playing a South American opponent and it will be a test that we are really looking forward to.
“We know players like Carlos Edwards will not able to go on forever but we feel games like this one on a FIFA date will allow him, Kenwyne Jones and Khaleem Hyland to be present and share some of their experience with upcoming players. It’s a meshing and handing over period. People think we should start with a young team but there are steps we have to take to get to 2018,” concluded Shabazz.
T&T’s first training session will take place at the Ato Boldon Stadium on Sunday morning. The Peru National Team is scheduled to arrive on Monday.
T&T 18-man squad for Peru friendly
1.Marvin Phillip (Central FC, T&T)
2. Cleon John (North East Stars,T&T)
3.Carlyle Mitchell (Vancouver Whitecaps, Canada)
4.Carlos Edwards (Ipswich Town, England)
5.Daneil Cyrus (W Connection, T&T)
6.Aubrey David (Caledonia AIA, T&T)
7.Curtis Gonzales (Defence Force, T&T)
8.Kareem Moses (North East Stars, T&T)
9.Densill Theobald (Caledonia AIA, T&T)
10.Khaleem Hyland (Racing Genk, Belgium)
11.Kevon Carter (Defence Force,T&T)
12. Ataullah Guerra (Caledonia AIA, T&T)
13.Darryl Roberts (Samsunspor, Turkey)
14.Kenwyne Jones (Stoke City, England)
15. Keon Edwards (Caledonia AIA,T&T)
16.Devorn Jorsling (Defence Force,T&T)
17.Jemel Sebro (Defence Force,T&T)
18. Sheldon Bateau (KV Mechelen, Belgium)