Black Immigrant Daily News
The Barbados senior men’s football team assumed the role of “spoilers” yesterday evening at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.
The Tridents dented the hearts and most importantly the advancement of their Antigua & Barbuda counterparts, with an industrious 2-1 victory in their final Concacaf Nations League, League B encounter in St Johns, Antigua.
A draw would have been enough to take Antigua & Barbuda onto the preliminary round of the Concacaf Gold Cup, however, the Tridents produced an excellent second half display led by their youthful strike force.
Tridents midfielder Shaquan Collymore (right) vie for the ball with D?Andre Bishop of Antigua and Barbuda
The match day began with Antigua & Barbuda in one of the two qualifying spots with nine points from five matches, three points behind Group A leaders and 2023 Gold Cup qualifiers Cuba, and ahead of Guadeloupe with a superior goal difference.
When the two teams met in their first encounter, Antigua & Barbuda edged Barbados 1-0, courtesy of a late goal from Shavorn Phillips.
This open day defeat, saw an avalanche of defeats for the Tridents, who went on to lose their next four matches in the Concacaf Nations League and rooted to the base of the table.
The host would have seen this encounter as a walk in the park and they had the ideal start when the English-based Myles Weston curled an in-swinging corner from the right, directly into the goal in the 31st minute.
Antigua & Barbuda held their lead into the break and was half way into advancing to the next stage.
Coach Orlando da Costa’s half-time talk injected some energy into the Tridents and they equalized in sublime style.
In the 62nd minute, Thierry Gale exchanged passes with fellow forward Ryan Trotman which created just enough space for Gale to dribble through and curl his right footed shot into the bottom left-hand corner from, just inside the penalty area.
When a draw seemed imminent, substitute Tajio James stole all joy away from Antiguans & Barbudans everywhere, in the 87th minute
Center back Shane Codrington dribbled the ball over the halfway line and played a precise pass into James who held off his marker and lobbed the ball over the advancing Nicholas Townsend in goal, to give the Tridents a deserving lead and most notably their first win of the tournament.
The result ended Barbados 14-game winless streak, as their last taste of victory came on March 31, 2021, when they defeated Anguilla 1-0 in the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers.
Starting 11: Liam Brathwaite; Keymar Holligan, Shane Codrington, Zachary Elli-Hayden, Andre Applewhaite; Omani Leacock (Akeem Chandler), Nadre Butcher (Elijah Downey), Shaquan Clarke, Shaquan Collymore (Armando Lashley), Thierry Gale (Tajio James); Ryan Trotman (Curtis Jemmett-Hutson)