T&T not producing quality players, says Yorke

Dwight Yorke made 74 international appearances and scored 19 times for Trinidad and Tobago

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad,  CMC -According to former national player and Manchester United midfielder Dwight Yorke, Trinidad is struggling to produce quality football players and he has called on authorities to look at the way football is structured in the twin-island republic.

Speaking during the launch of a three-year-long partnership between Manchester United and Chivas Regal at One Woodbrook Place, Woodbrook on Tuesday, Yorke said Trinidad was no longer producing the quality of players it used to.

“Whether the structure is right from the colleges’ league, which used to be a big thing, and then the transition to the national team or Under-20s, they need to look at that. The people who are running the football need to seriously consider that.

“I haven’t really been involved in Trinidad and Tobago football so it’s very difficult to pass judgement on those circumstances. What I do know is that we haven’t been able to produce. We had a period of time when we had Kenwyne Jones, Stern John, Russell Latapy, Dwight Yorke playing in all these wonderful leagues. What have we got now? That, in itself, sends a clear message that something is not right,” the 47-year-old Yorke said.

“Since 2006, maybe the best time in Trinidad and Tobago football, we haven’t been able to relive those moments. Latapy has been able to produce us to a level where we were (close) to qualifying for the (second round) of the Under-20s. The senior team, what we have achieved under Dennis (Lawrence), he’s fighting and trying his hardest, but there has been no major progress.”

Yorke, who is now a Manchester United ambassador, said authorities and players needed to be more passionate about their job.

The former T&T assistant coach called for all stakeholders to step back, take a look at its current situation and move in another direction.

“You need to show passion in what you’re doing. The passion is no longer there. Where is the love of the game gone? We used to love the game that we play, and then everything else comes with it. Whether it’s the opposite now that people are attracted to other things and not prepared to put the work in, I don’t know,” Yorke said.

“We’ve got involved with the professional league [and] that hasn’t worked out the way everyone expected it to work out. You just look at the results that we have provided at the moment, it’s not great. The qualification (at all levels) has been a struggle.”

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