Bascome hails team’s belief before Gold Cup
Osagi Bascome has warned Haiti not to underestimate Bermuda as the island aims to deliver a knockout blow to one of the region's heavyweights at the Gold Cup.
Bermuda are preparing for their first appearance at the biennial 16-team tournament, where they have been placed in group B alongside Haiti, Costa Rica and Nicaragua. The 23-man squad heads to San José, Costa Rica, today.
Despite being the smallest nation by a large margin at the tournament, midfielder Bascome has warned Bermuda's rivals to be prepared for a shock if they fail to give Kyle Lightbourne's side their due respect before the opening encounter with Haiti at the Estadio Nacional in San José, Costa Rica, June 16.
“Right now, the way we are playing, I don't see any reason why we can't go out and get a result against anybody,” said Bascome, who featured for Darlington after a successful trial at the County Durham outfit last season, making three appearances in the National League North — the sixth tier of the English pyramid.
“Yes, we are going into the game as underdogs, but that won't change our mentality; we are going in for a win and hopefully we can leave with a win.
“We have to keep listening to the coaches and trust in what we are doing and the plan that we have in place.”
Bermuda enjoyed the perfect preparation for Haiti, overcoming fellow Gold Cup debutants Guyana in a 1-0 victory at the National Stadium on Thursday, courtesy of defender Donte Brangman's 37th-minute strike.
Bascome, who started the encounter and was replaced at half-time by Zeiko Lewis, hailed the atmosphere within the Bermuda camp, who will be heading to the Gold Cup on the back of a five-game winning streak.
“I felt we played really well and especially to come away with the win,” Bascome added.
“I felt like in the first half we dominated possession and did well keeping the ball, but the second half we played into their hands a bit more.
“It was a very good game to play ahead of the Gold Cup. They are a similar country to us and it shows where we are as a nation in football terms and going into the tournament on the back of a win is a massive boost for the whole team.
“There's a great atmosphere among the team on the back of five straight wins, we just need to keep building on that now.
“ If we slip up and suffer a defeat, we just have to keep going because we know we can do it.
“I don't think the atmosphere could be any better in the dressing room. We are all friends on and off the field and it is showing on the pitch with the results we are picking up, we just have to keep that up going into the tournament.
“Everyone within the team is pushing for a starting place and that is what we need if we are going to keep progressing. No one should feel comfortable within the squad because I feel like everyone is pushing each other. No one is certain of a starting place and that is exactly what we need.
“We just need all of the fans to believe in us and hopefully we will see you over in the tournament.”