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SVGFF strengthens technical staff

SVGFF strengthens technical staff

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A DECISION OF The executive of the St Vincent and the Grenadines Football Federation (SVGFF) has seen three persons added to the organisation’s technical staff.

Kendale Mercury, Michael Harris and Ian Sardine are the new to the current set-up.

Mercury is the new national senior men’s coach, with Harris his assistant.

Mercury, who has had a previous stint with the senior men’s team, as well as the SVG male U-20 coach and as the senior women’s head coach, replaces Cornelius Huggins, who has been deployed as the senior national female team head coach.

In the case of Harris, who is English–born, but married to a Vincentian, he takes over from Wesley Charles, who was previously Huggins’ under-study. He now takes charge of the male Under-17 outfit.

Meanwhile, Sardine, who has served the SVGFF in the capacities of president and first vice –president, has been assigned as coordinator of the youth development programme.

The announcements were made last Friday at a press conference held at the conference room of the SVGFF’s secretariat.

Third vice- president of the SVGFF- Wayde Jackson explained the reasoning behind the additions.

“I know a lot of people been thinking that we need may be a foreign coach or somebody from Europe,” Jackson stated.

“The thing is CONCACAF is not heading in that direction…. CONCACAF thing now is to educate in the region … We embrace that philosophy by CONACAF, hence we are expanding the technical team by bringing in knowledgeable people …We are going to strengthen from within,” Jackson added.

But whilst Mercury and Harris have been added, and Huggins and Charles reassigned, there have not been changes with the other national teams.

Andrew Bramble remains the head coach of the female Under-15, with Bishon Williams still in charge of the male Under- 15 and Wayde Jackson and Alfred Grant, the coaches assigned to the national Under -20 and national Under-23 squads.

The first test of Mercury and Harris is to prepare the senior team for the Windward Islands Football Association (WIFA) tournament, set to be hosted here in March, to be followed by a home match in the Nations League qualifiers against Bonaire.

St Vincent and the Grenadines senior men’s team, which is dubbed Vincy Heat, has had a wretched time during the last three years.

Among the down moments, was the team’s defeat to lowly ranked Turks and Caicos Islands, in the Nations League qualifiers last month.

Vincy Heat was beaten 3-2, by the Turks and Caicos, away in the Providenciales last month.

The lone triumph for St Vincent and the Grenadines in the Nations League was a one-nil win away to French Guiana in October.

Before, Vincy Heat notched up 11 consecutive defeats , with the main losses coming in the world cup qualifiers.