Trinidad and Tobago continued their winning ways securing their third straight victory with a 4-0 win over Haiti to top Group F in the 2010 Digicel Caribbean Cup group phase on Saturday at the Manny Ramjohn Stadium. With this result the Soca Warriors and Guyana advance to the Digicel Cup Finals in Martinique.
The hosts came out of the blocks firing and stamped their authority from very early on. They took the lead through Samsung “Man of the Match” Hughtun Hector in the 4th minute when he dispatched his shot past the Haitian keeper in clinical fashion.
With Haiti needing to avoid a heavy defeat to ensure their place in the Finals in Martinique, it went from bad to worse for them as in form striker Devorn Jorsling doubled T&T’s lead in the 7th minute. The Haitians tried desperately to get back into match, they surged forward on a number of occasions but could not find the killer pass or the precise finish in the final third. The T&T defense stood strong despite being missing a couple of their regulars with captain Clyde Leon and defender Jovin Jones out through injury.
It would take T&T some time to stretch their lead which they did through Kerry Baptiste in the 29th minute. The Joe Public striker was on hand to finish from close range after very good build up from the home team. Soon after, on 31 minutes, Hector punished the Haitians for some untidy work at the back, lashing home from inside the 6-yard box to give T&T a comfortable 4-0 cushion.
The second half saw Trinidad and Tobago take their feet off the gas a little, they failed to add to their goal tally, but neither could the Haitians trouble the score board. Substitute Shahdon Winchester did go close on a couple occasions but lacked a bit of luck on the night. Two separate five minute spells in the first half ultimately cost Haiti dearly.
Speaking during the post match press conference, T&T head coach Russell Latapy was happy with the victory but was slightly disappointed with the second half performance. “I’m always delighted with a win. We took care of business early and it put the Haitians under some pressure. It allowed me the chance to have a couple other players on the park. It’s a building process and if we can keep this momentum by playing the way we are at the moment in Martinique then I’d be very happy,” Latapy said. Latapy was also pleased to be able to give players a chance to prove their worth and says his players did what was required of them.
Haitian coach Brazilian-born Edson Tavres, though disappointed that his team failed to progress to the Finals, had some positives to take back home. “It was difficult for us tonight but I was more disappointed with our first match. I thought we played better in the other two games including tonight. We have a young team and we were also missing some of our foreign-based players. Unfortunately we are not going to Martinique but we can take something from here and look ahead to the future. We have a couple of international friendlies coming up and we’ll take it from there into the World Cup qualification matches next year. Overall this tournament was a good stepping stone for us and we will hope to learn from it for the future,” Tavres said.