Reggae Boyz can make 2022 Fifa World Cup – VassellMonday, May 25, 2020
BY Paul A Reid
REGGAE Boyz midfielder Peter-Lee Vassell believes this team can qualify for the 2022 Fifa World Cup to be hosted by Qatar and replicate the historic 1998 qualification to France.
Vassell, who is out of contract but was hoping to be playing professional football overseas had it not been for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic which shut down sports globally for two over months, thinks the Reggae Boyz unit has what it takes to make it out of the Concacaf region.
“I strongly believe we can make it to the World Cup,” he told the Jamaica Observer late last week.
“The guys have been doing a lot of work and we have been getting good results over the past year, and we have been together as a team as well.”
The creative midfielder, who has scored six goals in his 16 appearances for the Theodore Whitmore-coached team since he started playing in 2018, added: “I think it will happen; we just have to come together when it is time and when football starts back, we come together as a team and prepare for it – but I do strongly believe we can go to the World Cup.”
The disruption by COVID-19 has forced Concacaf to rethink the qualifying format but Jamaica, who are fourth in the confederation and 48th in the Fifa world ranking, are expected to be part of any final round of eliminations that would be organised.
Vassell, who was drafted by Major League Soccer's Los Angeles Football Club but split time with Phoenix Rising Football Club in the lower United Soccer League before being released after the first season, was expected to join another club when the forced break set him back.
“This disrupted my plans big time as I had some doors open for me during the period before this thing happened,” he said, before adding, “there are a lot of positives to take from this and a lot of negatives, but nothing to sit down and worry about. It's just life and we just have to work with it.”
The two months plus during which he has not been able to train in a group or play football have been the longest he has not been able to play the game he loves, but he has not been idle.
“I have been doing a lot of training since this started; I have been running and I have a programme from the national team and also from my personal trainer,” Vassell shared. “I have been doing some boxing and swimming as well, so I have been doing my best to stay active for when football resumes.
“This is the longest period that I have not played any football; we normally get a two-month break for the off season so this is the longest time I have not played any football,” the former Faulkland FC and Harbour View FC player said.
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