Joevin Jones said his man-of-the-match performance in Trinidad and Tobago’s 3-1 win over Guatemala at the CONCACAF Gold Cup will put opposition sides on notice.
In retrospect, the 23-year-old Chicago Fire defender was not even the most recognisable player on the field with the same surname – given striker Kenwyne Jones’ exploits in the Premier League and Championship in England.
But it was the younger of the two that blitzed Guatemala on Thursday, with his winding run down the left wing earning the corner that led to Trinidad’s opener – before making it 3-0 with a left-foot finish in the 25th minute.
“It was very important for us tonight,” Jones said after the clash at Soldier Field in Chicago.
“Every team wants to win their first game in the group stage. We’re happy we got the three points tonight.
“Teams will be looking at us seriously now, keeping their eye on certain players, like me.
“It feels great getting man of the match.
“Obviously, I’m home [in Chicago], so I had to show what I could do. I just want to say thank you to Chicago Fire and my country.”
Coach Stephen Hart said while Jones’ early form was good, he was brutally honest about the left wing-back’s performance after the interval.
“I thought he had a fantastic first half,” Hart added.
“He did exactly as we like him to do: to penetrate with his dribbling, to deliver good crosses and good passes into the penalty area.
“Offensively and defensively he did very well, but in the second half, his game went down. He was caught out of position on several occasions.”
Hart also lauded his team’s defence and pressing – with it virtually creating their second goal from nothing, when Cordell Cato picked the pocket of two Guatemalan defenders.
“We pressed well, we covered the ball in good areas of the field, we got the goals and we kept possession well,” the former Canada coach said.
“We made Guatemala chase, which they weren’t comfortable with.
“In the second half, we dropped too deep. We allowed Guatemala to play.
“They made us run and played a little more direct and forced us to defend around the penalty box.
“It caused us problems.”
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