By Howard Walker Observer staff reporter
Jamaica's Under-20 footballers arrived home Sunday night after easily qualifying for the next round of the Caribbean Football Union tournament.
The Young Reggae Boyz brushed aside Aruba 4-0 on Saturday night to finish atop Group H with maximum six points, ahead of hosts Aruba on three and Antigua & Barbuda, zero.
Vancouver Whitecaps striker, Dever Orgill, netted all four goals for Jamaica in the 15th, 25th, 40th and 57th minutes to finish the tournament with five goals.
Orgill had opened the scoring in Jamaica's 4-1 win over Antigua & Barbuda last Thursday.
Jamaica, in their quest to qualify for the FIFA Under-20 World Cup, will now play Haiti and St Vincent & the Grenadines and the best second-placed team, which could be the Dominican Republic, in another set of qualifiers in January.
The winners of that play-off will join hosts Trinidad & Tobago, Mexico, USA, Canada, Costa Rica and El Salvador into the final CONCACAF group stage.
The second-placed team in the final Caribbean third round play-off will tackle Honduras for the final CONCACAF spot.
The eight-team event will qualify four teams for the U-20 World Cup in Egypt, from September 25 to October 16, 2009.
Head coach Donovan Duckie was pleased with the team's progression and is looking forward to the next stage in January.
"First let me say congratulations to the guys and the staff because I think it was a good team effort by everyone despite the conditions here. We did well," said Duckie.
But he was worried about the possibility of playing again on an astro turf and wants to be prepared next time around.
Said Duckie: "We are really looking forward to the next stage in Trinidad where we will be exposed to these surfaces again. I am very disappointed with us not having a surface (astro turf) in Jamaica. If we intend to go forward in terms of development and getting to the standard of first-world football, we need one.
"In Jamaica we didn't have the proper preparation on astro turf and we saw where some injuries occurred because we didn't have the proper footwear," he noted.
Duckie took a lot of positives from the two games and hopes to bring them forward in January, which will be a tougher assignment.
"I thought we were smarter than the opponents as they tried to be aggressive against us and disrupted their flow, which was good for us," he said.
"I wanted to say congratulations to Dever Orgill for scoring four goals in the game, although it was a good team effort," he added. "I was pleased with our transition because we knew they would be very compact so we wanted to pull them toward us and catch them on the counter. However, we need to improve in the final third and improve on our decision-making against quality opposition.
"We are so close to January so we have to continue our programme. We will give them a little break because I am really worried about the injuries."