Just over two weeks remain before Guyana’s ‘Golden Jaguars’ match skills with Belize in their final game of the Concacaf Nations League and the spirit among the squad and the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) couldn’t be higher as they anticipate victory which will ultimately result in Guyana’s debut at the Concacaf Gold Cup that kicks off in the USA, this June.
With 15 day’s remaining, the official launch took place yesterday at the Guyana Pegasus Hotel, which is one of the new partners and the team hotel of the Golden Jaguars under the theme, ‘Roar to Gold Cup’.
Sharing remarks at the event were President of the GFF, Wayne Forde, GFF Technical Director Ian Greenwood, Assistant Golden Jaguars Coach Charles ‘Lily’ Pollard, Social Media Officer Keeran Williams and Golden Jaguar Midfielder, Anthony Benfield.
Forde stressed that it will be Guyana vs. Belize on the 23rd: “Often times when we say Guyana Golden Jaguars, we take away the national significance but we will have the unique opportunity to have a 12th man in the game, and that is the fans’ support. So we would like to invite every Guyanese that has the means to reach to Leonora, to come out and support the match.”
Forde continued: “There is not a single doubt amongst the players, coaching staff or the GFF administration that Guyana will not win, we are going to prevail.”
Greenwood oozed confidence, noting that, “It’s an exciting time for Guyana, we are 90 minutes away from qualifying for the Gold Cup and it will be an exciting achievement when we get there. We have drastically improved the overall operations and management and of
the senior national team. Match fees and bonuses have improved by around 65% for both local and overseas players and that shows how serious we are about player welfare.”
Greenwood also disclosed that the locally based players have been in training for eight weeks and will travel to Suriname next week to engage the host in a practice match.
Coach Pollard was brief in his address, “As a player it was a privilege and as a coach it’s a greater privilege to be representing Guyana. I have played for Guyana for over two decades and I have never witnessed such a big preparation. It’s a great initiative by the GFF to put together this eight week programme for the local
based players and I believe it gives the locals a fair chance to challenge the overseas based members of the squad for a spot on the starting eleven.”
Midfielder Benfield who has been around for some years took the opportunity to represent his fellow players: “It’s a dream come true for me and the team and we are one game away from qualifying for the biggest tournament in the region. We are calling for a huge turn out from the local fans and we are hoping for you guys (fans) to be hostile as possible to the visiting side.”
Tickets for goes on sale today and cost $1500 and are available at the GFF Secretariat (Dadanawa Street, Section ‘K’ Campbellville), Guinness Bar (Durban Street), West Indian Sports Complex (Robb Street) and Andrew’s Supermarket (Aubrey Barker Road, South Ruimveldt).
In addition, Official Replica Jerseys are available at GFF Secretariat at a cost of $5000.00 each. (Calvin Chapman)
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