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Jones urges Bermuda to finish on a positive

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Craig Brown, the Bermuda Under-20 team physio, works through some stretches with the players at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, yesterday(Photograph by Crenstant Williams)

Bermuda will have final chance to salvage something from what has been a disappointing campaign at the Concacaf Under-20 Championship when they face Barbados at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, today.

Coach Ray Jones’s side are rooted to the bottom of group E, having lost their previous matches against Costa Rica, Haiti and St Lucia.

Perhaps most worrying for Jones is Bermuda’s failure to register a goal while leaking ten, an issue they must address if they are to be spared further punishment against Barbados.

Bermuda dominated possession and created more chances in their 1-0 defeat by St Lucia on Wednesday, but were unable to score and were ultimately undone by Aaron Richard’s second-half strike.

Jones’s charges also had a goal disallowed to compound their misery.

“We controlled the match from start to finish,” Jones said. “We had much better possession, build-up and created enough chances to win the match, so we’re very disappointed not to have won.

“We still haven’t registered a goal and I thought we definitely should have come out with not just a goal, but a few goals and the three points.”

Jones hopes his team’s fortunes finally take a turn for the better in their final group match today.

“We have one more game to try and come away with a positive, and we’re trying to lift the boys,” Jones said.

“The staff are revitalising the players as much as we can, physically and mentally. Hopefully, we will have something to smile about at the end of the match.”

Bermuda’s aim of reaching the Under-20 World Cup in Poland next year was dashed with two rounds of group matches remaining after Costa Rica’s 1-0 victory over Haiti on Monday.

The top four finishers in Florida will punch their ticket to the next Under-20 World Cup.