Under-17 female football team captain, Rachel Walters, says with minor improvements, this national squad has the potential to qualify for the World Cup Finals in Jordan next year.The young Reggae Girlz beat Haiti 2-1 to lift the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) Under-17 Women’s Championship in Haiti recently, and Walters, one ofthe team’s standout players at the tournament, says this group knows what is at stake and she wants to be the first captain to lead the country into a FIFA women’s championship.”I am very confident in this set of players. We know what is at stake and what we can do to make it to the World Cup,” she told The Gleaner upon the team’s arrival at the Norman Manley International Airport yesterday.”We need to improve both our defensive and attacking, but we have more overseas players coming in and I think the team will be better. Plus we will have more camps, and that will help with the chemistry, and when we have chemistry we play better,” Walters stated.The 17-year-old St Jago High School student who plays in defence said the team had to fight hard for success in Haiti and believes she played her role in motivating her team as captain.”I feel very elated; the team went out strong believing in ourselves and that we could do the job. The final was very competitive, but we got an early goal and we dug deep to come out victorious,” said Walters.”I thought I did a fairly good job as captain. I went out knowing what we had at stake and I had to stay focused and motivate my teammates and ensure that the job was done.”I really believe the team can reach the World Cup, and I would love to be the captain who does it,” she added.
Roberto Martinez believes Everton’s fans deserve to be supporting a club which wins silverware, following the Toffees’ defeat in the FA Cup semi-final.Anthony Martial scored an injury time winner for the Red Devils to send them through to the Final, breaking the hearts of Martinez and the blue half of Merseyside.Despite falling behind to a Marouane Fellaini striker, Everton grew into the game, and after Chris Smalling had put the ball into his own net to bring the tie level, it was Martinez’s men who looked the better team.They would likely have continued this dominance into extra-time, and many would have made them favourites to progress.But Martial bagged the late goal, knocking Everton out, and ensuring that their fans have to go another season without a trophy.Speaking after the game, Martinez said: “We wanted to give silverware to our fans which they deserve immensely, and we want to finish as high as we can in the table.“I think we can learn a lot from this season. It has been a tough season.”The Spaniard has been coming under increasing criticism this year, but the performance his players put in suggested that they are behind him – something Martinez himself realised.Martinez said: “As a manager I just concentrate on working with the team and building from game to game.I think you’ve seen an incredible togetherness, an incredible desire and an incredible belief in what we can achieve.”