Trinidad and Tobago are propping for a hostile San Jose crowd when they come up against Costa Rica tomorrow in a 2018 World Cup qualifier which could prove decisive for both teams.
The TT team experienced one final training session at Prentup Field in Denver yesterday morning before leaving for San Jose in the evening. TT Head coach Dennis Lawrence opted to stay in Denver following Thursday’s match against the United States as he felt the preparation offices would be a more pleasant condition for the team.
Defender Aubrey David, who played last year with Costa Rican club Deportivo Saprissa, will be acquainted with the conditions in San Jose and it is required to be an antagonistic one as the hosts are edgy for a win after being held 0-0 by Panama last Thursday at home. Their fans are relied upon to be on the backs of the players, asking them to three focuses. By last Tuesday, effectively 25,000 tickets were sold for tomorrow’s match, and the Costa Rican Football Federation was expecting a sold-out house by Gameday.
“Knowing the Costa Rican fans and how important football and the national team is to them, they will be out in their numbers to drive the team on Tuesday,” David revealed to TT FA Media.
“The people are very, very passionate and they will be looking to spur the team on against us. But having played here and knowing what to expect, I don’t think our boys need to be intimidated. Once we settle and we get the fans out of our minds and play the game, then we should be able to cope with things,” David said.
“We have players who have faced very hostile conditions in countries like Mexico, Honduras. Guatemala and El Salvador, so it’s not going to be an eye opener on Tuesday. And the head coach is capable of preparing the players mentally for the challenge ahead. The most important thing will be for us to settle and not let the Costa Ricans get on top of us from early and hopefully, we can stick together and grind it out, “David included.
TT have never beaten Costa Rica in a World Cup qualifier, and its best outcome in San Jose was a 1-1 draw in 1989.
In 25 meetings between both countries in all types of senior team matches, TT has won three, drawn four and lost 18 with the latest annihilation being a 2-0 misfortune in March in Port of Spain. One of the significant wins for TT was a 2-1 win at the 2000 CONCACAF Gold Cup quarter-finals courtesy of goals by Arnold Dwarika and the deceased Mickey Trotman. TT have beaten Costa Rica only once in any form of World Cup qualification, that being a 2-0 win for the Under 17 Men’s team in World Cup qualifying last round in Panama in 2013.