With only one day remaining before their must-win clash in the CONCACAF Nations League, the respective coaches and captains for the Golden Jaguars and the Belizean Jaguars, have expressed their confidence in securing a historic victory.
They talked up their chances at a pre-match press conference yesterday at the Pegasus Hotel.
Guyana will face off with the Central American side at the National Track and Field Centre, Leonora in a must win encounter. Victory for the locals will seal their maiden berth in the Gold Cup. Guyana currently sit on six points in eighth position.
On the other hand, a win for the visitors, who are also on six points but in 13th place, would seal their 2nd appearance in the event following their 2013 participation.
Golden Jaguars Head-Coach Michael Johnson stated that the team is extremely excited, as they are on the precipice of greatness and achieving something historic.
According to Johnson, “There is purpose on this team, there is definitely a reason and question as to why we are where we are now and I believe its destiny. This is an opportunity for this group of players to take on this mantle in terms of what is placed in front of them and that is qualification to the Gold Cup.”
He further added, “The training session has been excellent, the way the boys have played, trained with and without the ball, the team spirit in camp is exceptional and this is probably one of the best squads in my time that we have assembled. We are really excited about the game and looking forward to making history.”
Similarly, Samuel Cox, Captain of the Golden Jaguars unit said, “We have gone through years of being the nearly men, we played against St. Vincent [and the Grenadines] and went out by goal difference, the last Gold Cup qualification we went out to Jamaica after being 2-0 up, and now we find ourselves in an opportunity which can really take us to the next level.”
He further stated, “From my time being in the programme for the last five years I have seen unbelievable progression and under this new crop of players, under this new staff we feel that we are ready to go to the next level. The boys are ready, we have trained well, [and] we know we now just have to do the business of creating some history come Saturday.”
Meanwhile, Head-Coach of Belize Palmiro Salas while utilizing the services of a translator, said that the game is of utmost importance to both teams, as a win would likely secure passage to the Gold Cup.
He revealed that while not much information has been gathered on Guyana, the team, which comprises six foreign based players and is a mixture of youth and experience, is physically and tactically prepared for what is expected to be an exciting fixture.
“They [Guyana] have a good team, and we have a good team. We are ready for the game”, he added.
Similarly, captain and goalkeeper Woodrow West said that he envisions a very competitive match and that it’s always an honour to represent his country.