A week ahead of their CONCACAF Gold Cup debut, Guyana’s senior football team, the ‘Golden Jaguars’, have arrived in Costa Rica to play their second and final friendly international match – which is intended to fine-tune their preparations ahead of their historic appearance at the CONCACAF Gold Cup in the USA next Tuesday.
Led by Head Coach Michael Johnson and his Technical staff, the Golden Jaguars commenced an important period of encampment, designed to ensure the team is properly prepared and peaking in time for its ‘Group D’ matches against the USA, Panama and Trinidad and Tobago.
Team bonding has been getting better by the minute, and following their first match against Bermuda, on Thursday last in Bermuda, Team Guyana made a long journey to Costa Rica, arriving in the wee hours of Sunday.
The first training session was held on Sunday afternoon at the CAR Turrucares Playfield in San Jose.
Johnson informed that despite just getting a few hours’ rest, everyone is fit and well, and the session was satisfactory. “We had to do something today. We knew the lads were tired, but we knew we had to do something, bearing in mind that we have a game in 48 hours. So yes, it was a long journey; but we got some good work in, a bit on how we want to play defensively without the ball. So it was a good session, all in all. Players have enjoyed it, and now we are looking forward to the other training sessions,” Johnson detailed.
Touching a bit on team bonding, Johnson said it is getting better as the days go by.
“I think the most important thing we see in camp is the unity. I’m not with all this local-based and international-based; what I’ve seen over the last week coming together is a unified group, a group that interacts well no matter where they’re from. We all pull on the same shirt to play for one common cause, and that’s for Guyana,” he declared.
Come the Haiti game, Johnson said, they are looking to see improvements on a collective scale. He reminded that it is not about the result at this juncture of preparations.
“If it were about the result, I’d play the strongest team; I’d play everybody where they should be playing. But for us it‘s about learning, and trying to keep something back and just making sure that the players are taking on board all the information we are giving them. The journey continues!” he said.
The friendly is expected to kickoff at 12:00hrs or 10:00hrs, Costa Rica time.