Former Trinidad and Tobago ace international footballer, Russell Latapy, is now the man in charge of coaching the Barbados senior men’s team.
Latapy who has played for clubs in Portugal and Scotland and had many caps for Trinidad, taking his country to the World Cup, took over the job of head coach Monday filing a position that was vacant since 2017.
The former attacking midfielder’s appointment took effect just under a week following the Bajan Tridents’ 0-1 loss to Nicaragua in the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Football Nations League qualifying competition on March 24.
That loss was the final game for the Bajan senior team whose record of one win, against United States Virgin Islands, and three losses, against Guyana, El Salvador and Nicaragua, denied them a place on the prestigious Gold Cup tournament that begins mid-year.
Barbados ended that qualifying series 25th out of 34 teams but needed to get into the top 10 to earn a place in the Gold Cup.
This means that Latapy, who has also coached the Trinidad national team, has his work cut out.
“We have a bunch of players who are talented and not only talented, but they are prepared to work very hard. And I think for any coach if you have a team that is willing to work hard then that is half of the battle done,” the 50-year-old said.
“One of our main goals to help improve football in this region which gives the young players the opportunity not only to play professionally but to improve their standard of life. Because this is what football has done for me and I would like to pass on some of this experience and give some of the younger players the opportunity to do the same.”
Latapy got his first Trinidad and Tobago cap in 1988 at age 20 and two years later began his international club career in Portugal then on to Scotland.
He helped his nation make it through the 2006 World Cup qualifying campaign earning a berth in the finals for the first time.