Whitmore confident of taking Reggae Boyz to Gold Cup

first_imgKINGSTON, Jamaica (CMC) – Head coach Theodore Whitmore says he is confident of leading Jamaica’s Reggae Boyz into the prestigious CONCACAF Gold Cup in July.The former national star was an interim replacement last September for German Winfried Schaefer, following the country’s failed 2018 World Cup campaign, and the Jamaica Football Federation said this week he would continue in the position for upcoming friendlies against United States and Honduras.Whitmore, however, who enjoyed a previous four-year stint as Reggae Boyz head coach, said he was eyeing a long-term appointment.“2017 can be a silver lining in a way for us,” said interim Jamaica head coach Whitmore.“It’s always a pleasure (to coach Jamaica). It’s something I want to do and I know that I can achieve great things. We just need time to put things in place to make it successful,” he told the Gleaner newspaper here.“I wouldn’t say (the appointment is only for) two games, because I am thinking it will be up to the Gold Cup, so I definitely believe I will lead the team into the Gold Cup and I think I am getting closer to landing the job on a more permanent basis.”Whitmore made a successful start to his second stint in charge, overseeing wins over Guyana and Suriname in the third round of the CFU Caribbean Cup last October as Jamaica reached the finals set for June.Reggae Boyz play the USA on February 3 at the Finley Stadium in Chattanooga, Tennessee and square off against Honduras 13 days later at the BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston, Texas.This year’s Gold Cup runs from July 7 oi 26 in the United States.In 2015, Jamaica were good enough to reach the Gold Cup final first time before going down to eventual champions Mexico.Whitmore, who boasts over 100 caps for Jamaica in a sterling playing career, said he was focused on building the squad and striking the right balance between youth and experience.“It’s a work in progress. We want to get the players committed to playing for the country again,” the 44-year-old said.“We want to strike a balance between local and overseas players because we keep hearing about this debate and we don’t want to miss out on the fact that we want to develop local players and get them wanting to play for their country again.”He continued: “We have a lot of youngsters who want to represent the country and we have to assure them that opportunity. We are trying to put a squad together, so by weekend we should have a squad together, because we have to start the ball rolling as soon as possible.”last_img

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