Latapy, Yorke No Problem For Jack

Date Published: 
Jamaica Gleaner


TOP Trinidad and Tobago football official Jack Warner is not worried about the absence of Dwight Yorke and Russell Latapy on the Trinidad and Tobago squad currently preparing for the qualifying campaign leading up to the 2002 World Cup finals.

Warner, a FIFA vice-president, is optimistic about Trinidad and Tobago's chances despite the failure of the Manchester United star and Hibernian midfielder to report for national duty.

Speaking from Las Vegas, USA where he is currently watching the CONCACAF club championship, Warner also revealed that Panama has replaced Jamaica in a friendly international now carded for October 12.

Trinidad and Tobago were originally scheduled to play the 1998 World Cup finalists in Kingston on October 10 but the match was called off by the Jamaica Football Federation, who cited poor fan response for the clash.

"Trinidad and Tobago will play with those who want to run out for their country and who are committed and dedicated," said Warner.

The no-nonsense Warner said he was optimistic that Trinidad and Tobago would succeed in the 2002 World Cup qualifying campaign with or without Yorke and Latapy.

Both high-profiled players are currently embroiled in a dispute over their availability following their no-show against Colombia in Miami, last month.

Led by Major League Soccer (MLS) star Stern John, who plays for Colombus Crew, Trinidad and Tobago upset Colombia 4-3 with John scoring a hat trick.

Warner also described Jamaica's decision to cancel the friendly as "laughable" since the JFF is now reportedly "seeking to get El Salvador to play in Kingston.

Warner revealed that Trinidad and Tobago have already confirmed engagements with Paraguay, Bolivia, Guatemala and Honduras which completes the preparatory programme for 1999.

Warner also said he is attempting to arrange overseas stints for the Trinidad and Tobago team in Saudi Arabia and Morocco for late this year or in early 2000.

Among the players Warner has secured a commitment for the Panama match are Anthony Rougier, the Trinidad and Tobago captain who plays for Port Vale, Marvin Andrews (Raith Rovers), Jerren Nixon (FC Zurich), John, Ancil Elcock (Colombus Crew), Brent Sancho (Mapo 47) and Angus Eve (Chester City).

There is also a possibility that former Dallas Burn player Mickey Trotman may be available following a trial in Germany.