There may very well be a new starting 11 for the Bajan Tridents as they prepare to face Dominica tonight.
Head Coach Russell Latapy said there were a few niggles within the 24-man squad and it was the perfect opportunity to look at one or two other players.
“We will freshen it up a bit and there would be a few changes. In terms of the shape that is still undecided. I am not going to play a player who is 75 per cent fit when we have another player who is 100 per cent fit. I think that is going to be determined in the next 24 hours or so because in terms of injuries 24 hours can make a big difference,” he said, during a press conference yesterday ahead of the final encounter.
Dominica defeated Barbados 2-1 in 2017, but in 2018 the Tridents came back and beat the Dominicans 2-0 in the Windward Islands Football Tournament.
Barbados #1 custodian Kishmar “Pop Pop” Primus is said to be struggling and has not made a full recovery following an injury to his ankle during last Friday’s game against the Dominican Republic. This will give way for Liam Brathwaite to be in bars and 20-year-old Nashton Browne to be on standby.
The Tridents will also be playing minus the services of central defender Mario “Bagga” Williams who received an automatic suspension following his second yellow card in the last game.
The Tridents currently have four points and sit behind Dominican Republic and Panama in Group D of the Concacaf Qualifiers for the FIFA 2022 World Cup. Only the top-placed team will advance to the next round.
Latapy added management would use this final encounter to give some of the younger players experience at a World Cup qualifying level.
“We have people who are fighting for pride and prestige and to get up the table. The higher the ranking and the more games you win it puts you in a better position in terms of your Member Association. But what we’ve seen from [Dominica] so far, they are a very physical team. They are not afraid to get involved and can be physical and we have to be prepared for that,” he said.
He said tonight was another big stepping stone in preparing the team for the next two to three years, and it was important to always look forward in the region.
“When we look at 2026 when the World Cup will be in this region, this period is preparation for development for three to four years down the road. We know we have some important games coming up in the next month in the Gold Cup Qualifiers. It’s been a situation where we know we have some players we’ve used over the last two years and we want to strengthen the squad and have a squad that can compete at all levels. We know we have some positions that we would like to strengthen. We have some young players here and it might be throwing them in at the deep end and seeing how they handle it which will give us an idea in terms of moving forward,” he said.