Whitmore ready for Honduras fight
Even with a squad that continues to face personnel problems, national senior men's head coach Theodore Whitmore says that they are ready for the fight as they face Honduras in their Concacaf World Cup qualifying game tonight at 7:05 in San Pedro Sula.
The October window for the Reggae Boyz has been plagued with injury and personnel issues that started when the squad was initially announced. England-based defenders Ethan Pinnock and Liam Moore were ruled out because of injury as well as attackers Leon Bailey and Corey Burke. While Cavalier's Jamoy Topey was a late addition to the squad, their problems are now further compounded with Alvas Powell out because of an injury suffered in their 0-0 draw against Canada on Sunday as well as Jamal Lowe who was been recalled by his club Bournemouth.
But although they face such issues, Whitmore says that he is confident in the fighting spirit that his team has and will show come tonight.
"We are unbalanced at the moment in terms of personnel and position. But we have warriors here, we have real soldiers here and it doesn't really matter who we put out there. We just have to go there and give 110 per cent and get the job done," Whitmore said.
Similar to Jamaica, Honduras are also winless so far in their World Cup qualifying campaign, although they have managed to accumulate three points and sit seventh in the table while Jamaica are still at the bottom with two points.
Whitmore says that their first clean sheet on Sunday represented a shift in the right direction given that they conceded eight goals in four games prior to Canada. He says that it is now to ensure that they are able to generate and finish the chances they create to achieve that balance that has been missing.
"I think these players go out there and give their all. There are some areas that we need to work on. We wanted to stop teams from scoring on us and I think that we achieved that (on Sunday). I think it's something that we can build on from start, stop bleeding (goals) and look to convert at the other end," Whitmore said.
Damion Lowe is expected to return to the starting line up after missing the Canada game to yellow card accumulation with Oneil Fisher a candidate to keep his place in filling the full back role in Powell's absence.
Jamaica have not won a game in Honduras in their history. The usually strongly built Hondurans are always tough opponents for Jamaica. The last time the teams met was in the 2019 Gold Cup.
Then Jamaica clipped the Hondurans 3-2 with goals from Dever Orgill (two) and Damion Lowe. In their last Concacaf World Cup qualifying clash in 2013 in Honduras the hosts blanked the Reggae Boyz 2-0. Defender Boniek Garcia who scored the opener in that match is, at age 37, still a member of the Honduran squad. Their top forward is Brayan Moya who scored in a 4-1 loss to the United States on September 8.
The man to watch for Jamaica is big forward Shamar Nicholson who has scored both goals for Jamaica in the current campaign and has been a bit unlucky on numerous other occasions.
JAMAICA VS HONDURAS
Head to head (World Cup qualifiers)
Dec 5, 1968 Honduras vs Jamaica L 3-1 World Cup qualifier
Dec 8, 1968 Honduras vs Jamaica L 2-0 World Cup qualifier
Sep 15, 1996 Jamaica vs Honduras W 3-0 World Cup qualifier
Oct 26, 1996 Honduras vs Jamaica D 0-0 World Cup qualifier
Jul 23, 2000 Jamaica vs Honduras W 3-1 World Cup qualifier
Oct 8, 2000 Honduras vs Jamaica L 1-0 World Cup qualifier
Apr 25, 2001 Jamaica vs Honduras D 1-1 World Cup qualifier
Sep 4, 2001 Honduras vs Jamaica L 1-0 World Cup qualifier
Sep 10, 2008 Honduras vs Jamaica L 2-0 World Cup qualifier
Oct 15, 2008 Jamaica vs Honduras W 1-0 World Cup qualifier
Jun 11, 2013 Honduras vs Jamaica L 2-0 World Cup qualifier
Oct 15, 2013 Jamaica vs Honduras D 2-2 World Cup qualifier