After seeing who was in the United States’ group in World Cup Qualifying, one thing dawned on me. I barely have a clue about these countries who play the USMNT. I mean, I was pretty good at Geography in high school and even I had no clue where St. Vincent and the Grenadines were until now. Think of this as part Geography, part history and part soccer to make you more aware of who the USMNT is playing against. This is what you need to know about Trinidad and Tobago.
(Editors note: We had planned to do this last Friday for the St. Vincent and the Grenadines game but decided to forego posting due to the Paris attacks. We’ll post the St. Vincent piece before their second game)
Country name: Trinidad and Tobago
Capital City: Port of Spain
Population: Around 1.2 million
Top Imports: Petroleum, natural gas, methanol, ammonia, urea
Import Partners: United States, Argentina, Chile, Jamaica, Spain
Top Exports: Mineral fuels, lubricants, machinery, transportation
Export Partners: United States, Colombia, Brazil, Gabon, Canada
Gained independence from England in 1962.
Trinidad and Tobago does consist of two islands and are just north of the coast of Venezuela. Trinidad is the main island while Tobago is the smaller island northeast of Trinidad.
Team Nickname: The Soca Warriors
National Stadium: Hasely Crawford Stadium – Port of Spain
Stadium Capacity: 23,000
FIFA Ranking: 54 (4th in CONCACAF)
2014 World Cup Finish: Knocked out in second round out of four in CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying
World Cup Final Appearances: 1 (2006)
Best World Cup Finish: Group Stage (2006)
USMNT Record Against Trinidad and Tobago: 16 USMNT wins, 3 draws, 3 Trinidad and Tobago wins
The Trinidad and Tobago/USMNT series is best remembered for the “Shot Heard Around the World.” This was where Paul Caliguiri scored the game winning goal that qualified the United States for the 1990 FIFA World Cup. It was the first time they had qualified for a World Cup in 40 years and sparked the modern era of American soccer as well as denied Trinidad and Tobago qualifying for a World Cup for another 16 years.
Trinidad and Tobago is also infamously known for Jack Warner, the former FIFA VP and CONCACAF President who has been banned for life from any soccer related activity due to bribery and corruption involving TV rights to international tournaments as well as accepting bribes for World Cup votes.