John back for Trini after two year break – The Royal Gazette | Bermuda News, Business, Sports, Events, & Community

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John back for Trini after two year break

Former Premier League striker Stern John could be set to face Bermuda in next month's World Cup qualifier after being recalled to Trinidad's squad.

The 34-year-old is his county's all-time leading scorer and spent more than a decade plundering goals for English teams including Sunderland, Birmingham City, Southampton and Nottingham Forest.

John, who retired from professional football last year, was part of the Trinidad team that beat Bermuda 3-2 on aggregate during in a World Cup qualifying tie in 2008. He struck the all-important goal in Trinidad's 2-0 win at the National Sports Centre to signal the end of Bermuda's campaign.

John hasn't played in a World Cup qualifier since 2009 against the US, and said he was looking forward to his return. Now playing for DirecTV North East Stars, John is likely to play in Trinidad's friendly against India on Sunday.

“It's good to be back. I've really been pushing myself to regain full fitness and I'm grateful for the opportunity. We have a long World Cup campaign and if I can make a contribution then I'm definitely anticipating that chance,” he told the Trinidad Guardian.

“We have a squad of dedicated and committed players both at home and abroad and hopefully we can get it right for the qualifiers. That starts with a good showing against India. The football in our country needs a boost and we are aiming to play our part on the pitch.”

Also included in Trinidad's squad are fellow 2006 World Cup veterans Densil Theobald, Anthony Wolfe and Darryl Roberts. Head coach Otto Pfister has picked a squad made up exclusively of local-based players.

“The players for this game will be fully local-based. These players have been training with a lot of commitment and desire in all my sessions and they will get the opportunity,' said Pfister.

“Of course we are preparing for the World Cup qualification which begins next month but it is important to see how the players perform. We want to have the best squad. I have already seen the overseas player and I know what they are capable of doing but again, no player's position is guaranteed in my team.”

Bermuda take on Trinidad on September 2.

Stern John (number 14) takes part in a Trinidad training session at the National Sports Centre in Bermuda in 2008.

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Published August 18, 2011 at 2:00 am (Updated August 18, 2011 at 9:19 am)

John back for Trini after two year break

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