Extremely positive’ – U-17s hunt win against Barbados

The match is set to start at 5:30 pm.

Head coach of the Young Reggae Boyz Wendell Downswell stressed that his team will be “extremely positive” from the outset against the lesser fancied Barbados.

“We’ll be extremely positive going into that game. We want to win it from as early as possible, so we will apply early pressure. We don’t want to bring that down to the wire,” he said.

The slick-looking Panama team will face Barbados on Wednesday, which gives them more time to recover as well as an advantage of knowing what result they need to top the group.

The top two countries from each group will progress to the quarter-final stage. Based on the competition format, Jamaica can face either Costa Rica, Canada or Trinidad & Tobago, depending on who progresses.

The four semi-finalists at these Championships will qualify for the 2013 FIFA Under-17 World Cup to be held in the United Arab Emirates.

The veteran youth coach said his priority now is to advance to the last eight.

“The aim is to move to the next round. We just want to qualify…. If we can qualify as number one that is fine, but we’ll also take second place,” said Downswell.

The Jamaicans didn’t take the field for practice yesterday, but instead held pool sessions. The players — all students — also took time out to catch up on schoolwork.

Downswell said it was important the youngsters recovered from the high-tempo match played against Panama a day earlier.

“It’s about recovery so they had those pool sessions. We also want to refocus on the task at hand. Sometimes when you play against teams that you consider not as strong you tend to drop your game. There is no room for complacency against Barbados,” he insisted, while suggesting that given the depth of the squad, he should be able to comfortably replace the two suspended players.

Ryan Miller and Tyshan Hill were red-carded in the Panama match.

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