The only participation of Trinidad and Tobago in the final stages of the FIFA World Cup came in 2006, when they qualified for the tournament in Germany, but failed to win any match and were eliminated at the group stage. Trinidad and Tobago became the smallest nation to reach the finals of a World Cup tournament, a feat previously held by Northern Ireland since their first World Cup appearance at the 1958 World Cup.

Qualification

On 12 October 2005, Trinidad and Tobago secured fourth place in the CONCACAF final qualification round, and therefore participated in a playoff with the fifth place Asian team Bahrain for a chance to enter the 2006 World Cup. After a 1–1 draw in Port of Spain, the team beat Bahrain 1–0, with a Dennis Lawrence header in Manama, to clinch their first ever qualification for the World Cup, becoming the smallest nation ever to qualify for the World Cup finals.[1]

Squad

No. Pos. Player Date of birth (age) Caps Club
1 1GK Shaka Hislop 22 February 1969 26 England West Ham United
2 2DF Ian Cox 25 March 1971 16 England Gillingham
3 2DF Avery John 18 June 1975 58 United States New England Revolution
4 2DF Marvin Andrews 22 December 1975 98 Scotland Rangers
5 2DF Brent Sancho 13 March 1977 42 England Gillingham
6 2DF Dennis Lawrence 1 August 1974 65 Wales Wrexham
7 3MF Chris Birchall 5 May 1984 21 England Port Vale
8 2DF Cyd Gray 21 November 1976 41 Trinidad and Tobago San Juan Jabloteh
9 3MF Aurtis Whitley 1 May 1977 26 Trinidad and Tobago San Juan Jabloteh
10 4FW Russell Latapy 2 August 1968 66 Scotland Falkirk
11 3MF Carlos Edwards 24 October 1978 53 England Luton Town
12 4FW Collin Samuel 27 August 1981 19 Scotland Dundee United
13 4FW Cornell Glen 21 October 1980 37 United States Los Angeles Galaxy
14 4FW Stern John 30 October 1976 97 England Coventry City
15 4FW Kenwyne Jones 5 October 1984 30 England Southampton
16 3MF Evans Wise 23 November 1973 17 Germany Waldhof Mannheim
17 2DF Atiba Charles 29 September 1977 19 Trinidad and Tobago W Connection
18 3MF Densill Theobald 27 June 1982 40 Scotland Falkirk
19 4FW Dwight Yorke (c) 3 November 1971 56 Australia Sydney FC
20 4FW Jason Scotland 18 February 1979 25 Scotland St Johnstone
21 1GK Kelvin Jack 29 April 1976 32 Scotland Dundee
22 1GK Clayton Ince 13 July 1972 63 England Coventry City
23 3MF Anthony Wolfe 23 December 1983 4 Trinidad and Tobago San Juan Jabloteh

Silvio Spann was originally in the squad, but had to drop-out after sustaining a hamstring injury in the run-up to the tournament. He was replaced by Evans Wise.
Head coach of Trinidad and Tobago's 2006 World Cup squad was Leo Beenhakker.

Finals Matches

Trinidad and Tobago were drawn in Group B along with England, Sweden, and Paraguay.

In their first match, Trinidad and Tobago held a strong Swedish side to a 0–0 draw, despite having Avery John sent off less than 30 seconds into the second half. Team captain Dwight Yorke won Man of the Match honours.[2]

Trinidad and Tobago lost their second game of the group stage to England 2–0. Late goals from Peter Crouch and Steven Gerrard secured England a place in the second round.[3] Trinidad and Tobago had hoped for a draw between Paraguay and Sweden for their best chances of getting second place but Sweden defeated Paraguay 1–0.[4]

Trinidad and Tobago lost their third and final game of Group B to Paraguay 2–0. An own goal from Brent Sancho put them behind early in the game, and Paraguay scored a second goal late in the match from Nelson Cuevas.[5]

Trinidad and Tobago finished last in Group B with one point, and were eliminated from the 2006 World Cup. They were the only team in the 2006 World Cup not to score a goal.[6]

Group B

Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
 England 3 2 1 0 5 2 +3 7
 Sweden 3 1 2 0 3 2 +1 5
 Paraguay 3 1 0 2 2 2 0 3
 Trinidad and Tobago 3 0 1 2 0 4 −4 1
Team   Score   Team
Trinidad and Tobago  0–0  Sweden
England  2–0  Trinidad and Tobago
Paraguay  2–0  Trinidad and Tobago

Support

The Tartan Army, supporters of Scottish football, lent their support to Trinidad and Tobago, partly since they were opponents to England and in part six of the squad members played for Scottish clubs.

Aftermath

On their return from Germany, the government awarded Leo Beenhakker and each member of the squad the country's second highest honour, the Chaconia Medal, Gold, plus TT$1,000,000 (one quarter in cash, the rest in unit trusts).[7] As captain, Dwight Yorke was awarded TT$1,250,000, while players who had participated in qualification but not in Germany were awarded TT$250,000. Ten members of the teams' technical staff were also later awarded TT$250,000.[8]

On 6 October 2006, thirteen of the players in the 2006 World Cup squad indicated their intention to retire from international football after friendly matches against St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Panama on 7 October and 11 October, respectively. The players alleged that the Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation had reneged on various contractual commitments to the team.[9] This was upheld by the Trinidadian High Court in March 2011, who ordered that an interim payment of $1.14m should be made.[10]

References

  1. ^ "The World Cup's smallest team". BBC article. Retrieved June 11, 2006.
  2. ^ "Trinidad and Tobago 0-0 Sweden". BBC Sport. 2006-06-10. Retrieved 2009-08-18.
  3. ^ "England 2-0 Trinidad and Tobago". BBC Sport. 2006-06-15. Retrieved 2009-08-18.
  4. ^ "Sweden 1-0 Paraguay". BBC Sport. 2006-06-15. Retrieved 2009-08-18.
  5. ^ "Paraguay 2-0 Trinidad and Tobago". BBC Sport. 2006-06-20. Retrieved 2009-08-18.
  6. ^ "Beenhakker admits defeat was fair". BBC Sport. 2006-06-20. Retrieved 2009-08-18.
  7. ^ "Birchall and Bell up for award". BBC Sport. Retrieved 6 September 2021.
  8. ^ Trinidad and Tobago's Newsday : newsday.co.tt :
  9. ^ Vital Football, Scotland quits international scene., retrieved on 7 October 2006.
  10. ^ Trinidad & Tobago players to get 2006 World Cup cash (BBC)