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Vincy Heat head coach not prepared to renew contract

Vincy Heat head coach not prepared to renew contract
Vincy Heat head coach Kendall Mercury may be walking away at the end of his contract

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The St Vincent and the Grenadines Senior Men’s Football Team, Vincyheat may be without their current head coach, Kendall Mercury for the remaining fixtures in the 2022/23 Concacaf Nations League.

Vincy Heat head coach not prepared to renew contract
Vincy Heat Head Coach Kendall Mercury at last Friday’s press briefing on the current spate of poor performances

Vincyheat was defeated 4-1 by Trinidad and Tobago’s Soca Warriors on Monday, June 13 at the Haseley Crawford Stadium in Trinidad in the final game of this round, after going down to the Trinidadians 2-nil at Arnos Vale last week Friday.

Mercury, who had expressed cautious optimism about his team’s chances revealed after the 4-1 defeat that he is not prepared to renew his contract when it comes up for renewal on January 2, 2023.

The Vincyheat head coach who holds a UEFA ‘A’ License, is working to acquire his Professional License, and said he is sad that the senior men’s team was not able to advance to the next group, and now has to fight to remain in League B, and avoid relegation to League C.

He is convinced that the St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) premier team coaches need to change their mindset if the national team is to improve its performance, noting that the national coach can only work with the resources he is given.

Mercury is not happy with the results of the matches played by Vincyheat to date in the 2022/23 Concacaf Nations League campaign, and expressed, “I have let down the standards that I set for myself.”

Following three losses and a drawn game, the VincyHeat head coach identified three key areas which contributed to the poor showing. The physical fitness levels of the players and the levels achieved on the BEEP test leading into the tournament is not what is required to compete successfully at both Concacaf and FIFA levels, Mercury noted. Too many of the new players complained of the physical work required of them, which the senior players kept informing them was nothing compared to what they did in 2019.

He said while this lack of required physical fitness also affected the tactical awareness of the players individually and collectively, the mental toughness of the players was the biggest hindrance.

Mercury told SEARCHLIGHT that the players’ mental toughness was affected by their social life and many issues outside the field of play, including delayed issuing of contracts which also impacted that critical component of a footballer’s overall fitness.

Speaking immediately after the game in Trinidad, Mercury said, as was the case in previous games, too many soft and sloppy goals were conceded too early. He said it is painful when compared to the 2019 results, but it is something he will have to live with.

“I was not satisfied with the physical preparation of the team,”Mercury said.

At the post-match press briefing last week Friday following Vincyheat’s 2-nil home defeat to Trinidad and Tobago, Mercury had this to say: “Since we started back with the two friendlies in Dominica, our first match in The Bahamas on match day two, here against Nicaragua, we gave up soft goals,” and noted that, “the Trinidadians did not create either of those two goals.”

He added, “not just today” is St. Vincent and the Grenadines leaking “soft goals”.

“For me it is a Vincentian thing where finishing is concerned, and finishing affects the goalkeeping. I said it before. We play more mini-goals, small-goals soccer, so where are the strikers going to come from? If we keep playing small-goals soccer around the community, there is no goalkeeper between the small goals,” he pointed out.

“…I have to keep working on the training ground to try to rectify the issue of finishing.”

Whether Vincy Heat has a window to improve its performance in the remaining games of the 2022/23 campaign is up to the bosses at the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Football Federation, Mercury said for “…sometimes people need to have a rude awakening for them to learn.”