Jamaica's Football Coach Theodore "Tappa" Whitmore Fired!

by DHRW
(Jamaica)


TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras:

National senior men's team football coach, Theodore Whitmore, is to resign from his position.

He confirmed that he had been requested to do so by Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) president, Captain Horace Burrell.

This follows the Reggae Boyz' 2-0 defeat to Honduras, at the Honduras National Stadium in Tegucigalpa last night.

"He asked me to ... we had a meeting last night," Whitmore confirmed, as the team prepared to depart.

"I am going to," Whitmore told The Gleaner this morning from his room at the Real Intercontinental Tegucigalpa hotel when asked if he has resigned from his position with the JFF.

As he was getting ready for the team departure and pressed for time, Whitmore promised to say more.

Burrell was not yet available for comment, but Whitmore said they will be having a press conference.

The decision does not come as a surprise.

The team has failed to win a match in six outings in CONCACAF final round World Cup Qualifying (WCQ).

Tuesday night’s loss was the team’s fourth in succession and third in eight days.

Jamaica had lost back-to-back home games last week against Mexico and the United States, following a 2-0 defeat at Costa Rica on March 26.

In post-game interviews last night, Whitmore had been asked if he feared being sacked.

“Once you’re hired you can be fired,” he said.

Whitmore is a former Reggae Boyz captain and two-goal World Cup hero; his strikes enabling Jamaica to win its only match at its only senior World Cup Finals appearance, at France '98, when they beat Japan 2-1.

He is the second Jamaican coach to be sacked in Honduras, as Brazilian Rene Simoes was fired by Burrell after a loss virtually eliminated the team from World Cup Qualifiers in 2008.

When Simoes had been sacked in 2008, the decision was announced to the Jamaican media travelling with the team at a hastily arranged briefing at the Honduran airport.

Now, the Jamaica team is in a similar position as it is at the bottom of the six-nation standings on two points.

They are not yet out of the race, but far worse off.

Barring Panama, all the other contenders in the Hexagonal gained distance Tuesday night in the hunt for a spot at next year’s Finals in Brazil.

The United States extended their winning streak, a 2-0 margin over previously undefeated Panama, to take control of the elimination with 10 points.

Mexico drew goalless at the Azteca for the fourth time in the Hex, against Costa Rica, as both inched up to eight points, while Honduras’ victory catapulted them up the standings to seven points, as they leapfrogged Panama, on six.

Jamaica and Mexico have played six matches, while the others have played five. Each will play 10.

The top three automatically qualify for Brazil, while fourth will play Oceania champions New Zealand in home and away play-offs for another spot.

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