Whitmore: Boyz going in right direction

October 15, 2021
Reggae Boyz head coach Theodore Whitmore.
Reggae Boyz head coach Theodore Whitmore.

National senior men's football head coach Theodore 'Tappa' Whitmore says Wednesday night's victory over Honduras in their Concacaf World Cup qualifying match is a step in the right direction for the team.

The Reggae Boyz secured their first victory of the campaign after defeating hosts Honduras 2-0 at the Estadio Olimpico Metropolitano in San Pedro Sula, Honduras.

The win was a historic one as it was the Reggae Boyz's first over Hondurans in that country. Jamaica moved off the bottom of the standings up to sixth place on five points and putting them back in the race for a spot at the Qatar 2022 World Cup.

Whitmore entered Wednesday's match under huge pressure to save his job but he pointed out that he was not bothered by the negative things that were being said about his coaching methods or the team.

"And again it is not how you start, it is how you finish," said Whitmore following the team's arrival at the Norman Manley International Airport yesterday. "I am always confident but sometimes you go into the game and you don't get the result that you want," he said.

"I am always relaxed because anybody who knows Theodore Whitmore knows I am always relaxed despite what is happening around, I put a mental block on that and focus on what I have to do to get the job done," Whitmore said.

"If you look at the last two games against Canada and Honduras you could say that it is a step in the right direction for us and we can only build on that sort of performance," he said.

Mexico lead the standings with 14 points, three more than the United States. They are followed by Canada 10, Panama eight, Costa Rica six, Jamaica five (minus four goal difference), El Salvador five (minus five goal difference) and Honduras at the bottom on three. The top three teams will advance automatically to the World Cup, while fourth will get another shot, in an inter-continental play-off.

The Reggae Boyz will next play El Salvador in San Salvador on November 12 then the United States at home on November 16 to close out the fixtures for 2021.

Whitmore said they still have a number of areas that they need to improve before next month's round of games.

"I wasn't pleased with the overall performance but the commitment was there, you saw a team that wanted it and they showed that and I think they deserved it. We didn't get the desired results in the first set of games but I think the team learnt a lot and we can only get better from here on," he said.

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