CAY HILL–St. Maarten U20 footballers were given a rude awakening in their opening match of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) U20 Qualifiers at the Raoul Illidge Sports Complex last night.
The St. Maarten national team lost 9-0 to Puerto Rico in a mostly one-sided affair, although the home boys had two clear chances which went a-begging. The home team watched by a nearly full house of partisan supporters who cheered every tantalising opportunity that was presented was outplayed by a more organised and skilful opponent.
The first goal was scored as early as the third minute off a free kick which was not cleared by the defenders. St. Maarten responded right away through a powerful kick from Kael Richards which was not handled properly by the opposing goal keeper, but no one from the Friendly Island was close by to hit home the rebound.
The Puerto Ricans thereafter dominated possession of the ball and took their witty own time to plan their strategy. The plan entailed knocking the ball around as long as possible and then feeding the dashing wingers with high looping balls over the defence.
The home team struggled badly to keep out the set pieces too which accounted for more than half the goals. By half time, the winners were leading by 3-0.
Watched by Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports Sylveria Jacobs, who was giving vociferous support to the youngsters, St. Maarten found it difficult to penetrate the defence of the opposition.
On the other hand, the guests ran through the defence and scored at will. Number 11 Carmelo Carrillo crowned an outstanding night with three goals which included a penalty in the 80th minute.
Javier de la Rosa was also outstanding with two goals. The other goal scorers were Jose Rodriguez in the 22nd minute, Andre Rivera in the 47th minute, Juan O’Neill in the 68th minute and Jeimax Osorio in the in the 50th minute.
The St. Maarten team will be hoping for a quick turnaround in fortunes when they meet Antigua and Barbuda this Friday, June 17 from 8:30pm.
Source: Daily Herald
St. Maarten drubbed 9-0 by Puerto Rico