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Saint Lucia got the Jamaal Shabazz era underway on Friday with a 2-1 friendly win over Trinidad and Tobago club team, Horquetta Rangers.
Shabazz, the Trinidad and Tobago national, has previously coached Guyana to their biggest leaps in the FIFA rankings, and has coached several Saint Lucians during his time in the managerial ranks of the Trinidad and Tobago Pro League.
He got his tenure underway by deploying a 4-4-2 formation, featuring four under-23 players: goalkeeper Vino Barclett, and outfield players Djal Augustin, Alvinus Myers, and Melvin Doxilly. Overseas-based professionals, captain Zaine Pierre, Kurt Frederick, Otev Lawrence, Lester Joseph, and Andrus Remy lined up with Jevick MacFarlane and Antonio Joseph.
Saint Lucia looked bright in the first half, but did not capitalise on the chances they created. Kurt Frederick converted from the penalty spot in the 15th minute to give the home team a 1-0 halftime lead.
A defensive lapse in the 50th minute gave Tyrone Charles the opportunity to equalise for the Trinidadians. But just five minutes later, up popped Andrus Remy to convert for the home team.
According to Shabazz, he was pleased to see some of the positives that came out of Friday’s match, but he recognises that there is a lot of work yet to be done.