Islanders ‘General’, in trouble…By: BoriQa | May 19th, 2009
‚ÄúThe job must be finished off‚ÄĚ. The Islanders management want (Colin) Clarke to explain his polemic decision.
The Islanders management may summon Clarke to explain why he sat down seven regulars in the game against Trinidad (W. Connection)
Since his arrival on the island, the Northen Irish head coach Colin ‚ÄėGeneral‚Äô Clarke has accomplished historic results for the Islanders. But at the end of the road the Islanders have not achieved the desired big win. This has created some concerns within the organization.
The latest example was this past weekend, when the Islanders opened their participation in the CFU Championships in Trinidad & Tobago with a 2-0 overtime win against the Hatian club Temp√™te FC, which qualified the Islanders to the 2009-10 CONCACAF Champions League. Two days later, the Orange Troops started the final match with seven regulars in the bench and paid the price with a 2-1 loss to W. Connection from Trinidad, who won the Caribbean title.
“I do not agree with the way the game was played. 30 countries participate in this event and to be the champion has its merits, a value. Even if they are regional titles, they are important and we need to make an effort to win them”, told Isaac ‚ÄėSao‚Äô Nieves (Islanders Operations Vicepresident) to El Nuevo Dia.
On his judgement (Nieves), it seemed an erred desicion on Sunday’s game to put in the bench Jonathan Steele, Noah Delgado, Cristian Arrieta, and goalkeeper Bill Gaudette, among others.
“We should not make the desicion to protect some players at the expense of results… teams are valued by their victories. Nobody remembers subchampions or second place finishers”, said Nieves, as he anticipated Clarke’s summon to explain what happened.
Fan response in public forums also show their displeasure with Clarke’s strategies in crucial matches.
They do not forget, for example, the poor performance a month ago in Mexico in the 2nd-leg of the (CCL) semifinal where Cruz Azul got the victory in a penalty shootout to end the Islanders brilliant run in the recently completed 2008-09 CONCACAF Champions League.
Additionally, the team won the USL-1 regular season title last year, but fell 2-1 to the Vancouver Whitecaps in the Islanders first ever championship final.
‚ÄúColin (Clarke) has absolutely all our trust. That is not in game here. This is about a change of focus that we need to see with some adjustments on the way. He has done a great job, but the job must be finished off… everyone wants to see titles and sometimes we need to take our chances. I believe that on those moments he has failed to trust more on the team, and we need the team to win and dominate”, said Nieves.