PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, CMC – Head coach Dennis Lawrence will be without his marquee overseas-based pros when Trinidad and Tobago take on Ecuador in an international friendly next week Wednesday.
The contest in Guayaquil is being staged outside the FIFA window forcing many of the Trinidadian stars, who are key components of the country’s World Cup bid for Russia 2018, to honour commitments to their clubs.
Nine of the 25 players invited, however, were involved in the two previous World Cup qualifiers against United States and Costa Rica, while Lawrence have called up a couple of new faces for assessment. “We’ve invited 25 players to be part of the training squad and … we’ll get in a few days of preparation at home for the match,” Lawrence said.
“We have available to us some of the players who were involved for the two previous games against the US and Costa Rica and we’ve invited a few others to have a look at and see how they respond to what we are requiring of them.”
Forward Keon Daniel has been recalled to the national setup for the first time in four years while Keron Clarke and 16-year-old Isaiah Hudson will be getting their first taste of national action.
Germany 2006 World Cup star Carlos Edwards along with Curtis Gonzales, Hashim Arcia, Leston Paul, Marvin Phillip, Hughtun Hector, Nathan Lewis, Alvin Jones and Triston Hodge, have all featured recently for the national side.
Trinidad are preparing for their next round of World Cup qualifiers in September when they take on Honduras at the Ato Boldon Stadium in Couva and then face off against Panama in Panama City four days later.
The odds, however, are stacked against their qualification for next year’s showpiece, as they lie bottom of the six-team CONCACAF final round standings on three points from five defeats in six matches.