Manders in ‘pick me’ plea to BFA bosses
Ottawa City professional Taurean Manders has expressed his desire to play for Bermuda in their upcoming 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign, insisting: “I’ll always be available for my country.”
The tough tackling defender has previously only represented his country in friendly matches and is keen to experience the thrill and drama of World Cup qualifying football.
“There has been contact from the Bermuda Football Association and, as always, I’ve made myself available if picked to take part,” said Manders, who plays domestically for North Village.
“That’s really all I can say at the moment after (the BFA’s) initial contact; now there are other things that need to be sorted out. I feel pretty good about it though and I’m looking forward to helping Bermuda’s push (for qualification).”
Manders, 25, has been an ever-present for Ottawa this season, helping them climb to second in the Canadian Soccer League (CSL) just six points off the leaders.
But since their staggering –12-game unbeaten run came to a halt, Ottawa have lost two of their last five games, although Manders is confident it’s only a matter of time before they –embark on another winning streak.
And with the top eight sides qualifying for the CSL play-offs, Ottawa are sitting pretty for an extended post-season run.
“Every run comes to an end sometime, and if you want to look at the glass half full, it’s a good thing it’s happening now and not in the play-offs when it matters,” said Manders.
“The set up is similar to the US leagues where you have the top eight teams going into the play-offs, so while winning the regular season is a plus it’s not top of our list.
“We want to win the play-offs and we feel we have a very good chance.”
Manders admitted he hasn’t been happy with his recent form but believes it won’t be long until he’s back to his tenacious best.
“My form dropped a bit along with the team’s performances,” he said. “Hopefully the team, and I, can turn it around this weekend.”
Ottawa visit top of the table SC Toronto on Sunday.