Boyles: Home games will decide Bermuda’s fate
Devarr Boyles believes Bermuda must win all three of their home matches to stand any chance of advancing to the next stage of the World Cup qualifiers.
Losing even one of those games would all but end Bermuda's qualifying hopes, with Trinidad and Guyana already six points ahead of them.
Away defeats against those teams has hardly helped Bermuda's cause, although Boyles insists there's still everything to play for when they face Trinidad and Guyana on home soil early next month.
“Unfortunately we didn't get some of the results we wanted away from home, but if we win three home games then it's all to do for everyone else,” said Boyles, whose side must top Group B to qualify.
“When we're playing Trinidad, Guyana are playing Barbados away so even a draw could stymie their progress.
“Then, of course, there's the double-header between Trinidad and Guyana which could see them take points off each other. Mathematically it's still all to play for, I think that's the most encouraging thing for us,”
Boyles revealed he had a few selection surprises up his sleeve, while confirming that England-based professionals Nahki Wells and Freddy Hall would be available for both next month's games.
And with defender Roger Lee almost certainly ruled out for the qualifying campaign with a broken leg, Boyles hasn't ruled out sending an SOS to experienced North Village stopper Kofi Dill to fill the void.
“It's important we don't make any rash decisions just because one person is unavailable,” said Boyles, Bermuda's head coach.
“First we will look within our group and we have Reiko Trott who had a very good season with Bermuda Hogges. In fairness to Kofi, he's been excellent in the Village games I have seen this season, he's lost some weight and would bring plenty of experience.”
Boyles had hoped to prepare the squad at the Florida training camp they trained at ahead of their opening qualifiers, so to avoid on-Island distractions.
He said he was waiting to learn whether that trip had been given the go-ahead by the BFA executive.
“Ideally (heading to Florida) would be the first option,” he said, “but the indicators suggest that might be difficult because of the players' workload, family load as well the finances involved.
“If we have to prepare on Island we will have to change our programme, as the players won't be able to give quite the same level of commitment as they would in Florida due to their jobs.”
Bermuda's home matches are against Trinidad on October 7, Guyana on October 11 and Barbados on November 11. Their final qualifier is against Barbados away on November 15.
Tickets for Bermuda's qualifiers are available at www.bermudafa.com
Prices are as follows: Grandstand $25; general seating $15; children under-12 (general seating) $10, seniors (general seating $10). For more details on the BFA's three-match package and VIP package visit their website.
The team's replica jersey is also now on sale for $65 at the BFA office.