TT’s Shallun Bobb tries a scissor kick in a training session. – TTFA Media
Trinidad and Tobago’s hopes of advancing to the knock-out phase of the 2023 Concacaf Beach Soccer Championships were dented on Tuesday, after losing 6-2 to the US in Group C at Malcolm Park in Bahamas.
It was TT’s second defeat of the championship, after a narrow 2-1 defeat to Panama in their opening fixture on Monday.
TT will have to win their final Group C match against Dominican Republic on Wednesday, at noon, to have any chance of advancing to the knock-out phase.
The top two teams in each of the three groups will progress automatically to the quarter-finals along with the two best third-placed teams.
Favourites USA were out the gate quickly on Tuesday and piled early pressure on TT.
In the first minute, Gabriel Silveira struck a free kick from distance that forced TT goal-keeper Jabari Gray into a save, and seconds later USA struck the crossbar as TT were reeling.
TT’s first chance on goal was a free kick by Kevon Williams that did not threaten the US goalie.
Gray continued to be kept busy and could not prevent the US from opening the scoring. A bicycle kick by US captain Nick Perera found Nicholas Perea who converted a header for a 1-0 lead.
Minutes later, a volley from TT’s Shane Hospedales failed to trouble US goal-keeper Christopher Toth.
Even Gray tried his luck from distance and was aided by an awkward bounce, but it was dealt with by Toth.
Perera then doubled his team’s lead with another overhead kick in the closing stages of the first period.
The second period started just as the first did with the US in attack mode. Less than a minute in, the ball fell to Ricardo Carvalho and he converted from close range to make it 3-0.
Silveira gave USA a 4-0 advantage mid-way through the second period with a bicycle kick, before Christopher Albiston made it 5-0 just before the second interval.
TT had their best showing in the third and final period pulling back two goals. In the first minute, Akinola Gregory collected a pass and poked the ball home from close range.
TT looked more lively and they were rewarded for their fighting spirit. TT’s Shallum Bobb crossed the ball to Kareem Perry who headed the ball into the net.
With just over one minute remaining, USA rounded off the scoring in the dying seconds when Perea made it 6-2 with a volley.