Can the Reggae Boyz Win Gold for the Late Captain Burrell?

No one should ever doubt this tiny little nation, who introduced the word “talawah” to the world, as they aim to achieve their goal in defeating the USMNT to win Gold Cup 2017.

Horace Garfield Burrell aka Captain Burrell (Feb. 8, 1950 - June 6, 2017)

Horace Garfield Burrell aka Captain Burrell, OJ and OM: (February 8, 1950 – June 6, 2017)

LOS ANGELES: This evening will be a déjà vu moment for the Caribbean football Champions when they take on United States Men’s National Team (USMNT) at Levi’s stadium, Santa Clara in California, their second consecutive Gold Cup finals. This very persistent team, the Reggae Boyz, may get paid off with the inspiration of the late Captain Burrell. A Jamaican soldier, who was promoted to Captain in Jamaican Defense Force (JDF) and businessman.  Capt. Burrell was president of the Jamaica Football Federation for 2 decades and Vice-President of the CONCACAF. Burrell also founded The Captain’s Bakery and Captain’s Aviation Services in 1995 and 2008.

On Sunday, in the Gold Cup semi-final, the Reggae Boyz knocked out Mexico with a single late goal taken by Kemar “Taxi” Lawrence in the 88 minutes. Taxi stepped up to the task for his squad and catapult the Boyz to the grand finale event scheduled for 6:30 pm tonight.

Reggae Boyz warming up for the COPA America last September at the Rose Bowl with past head coach Winfred Schafer. He was fired from the position after exiting the tournament with zero point. Photo by L. Johnson

Reggae Boyz warming up for the COPA America game at the Rose Bowl with past head coach Winfred Schafer in the background. He was fired as head coach that same month after the Boyz exiting 2016 COPA America tournament with zero point. This photo was taken on Sept. 5, 2016  by Lyndon Johnson – CaribPress 2017 ©

After losing 3-1 to El Tri in the 2015 Gold Cup final, the Jamaican team had experience changes to their team and its management, including the recent passing of Jamaica Football Federation, JFF President Horace Garfield Burrell.

Captain Burrell died 30 days before the starting of the 14th edition of the CONCACAF Gold Cup, (July 7-26). His guidance and leadership still has an influence on the team to date.

In late September under Capt. Burrell’s administration, the JFF re-hired Theodore Whitmore as head coach, taking the Boyz in a different direction, as they prepare for this year’s Gold Cup tournament and other international games.

The Boyz are underdogs going up against Head Coach Bruce Arena’s USMNT squad, and the Boyz have never won a single Gold Cup trophy in its nation entire soccer history. As one of Jamaica’s prominent national hero wrote, “If death has power look for him–Look For Me In The Whirlwind” – wrote Marcus Mosiah Garvey, Jr.

No one should ever doubt this tiny little nation, who introduced the word “talawah” to the world, as they aim to achieve their goal in defeating the USA national soccer team to win Gold Cup 2017.

We may see a shift in the wind as the Reggae Boyz play their heart out to try defeat their opponent and may the inspiration of the late Horace Burrell be a guidance and his legacy a contribution to the Jamaica Football organization and the region at large. Winning today’s Gold Cup would align Jamaica in meeting its Vision 2030, and hopefully the Boyz can put some spices to this year’s 55th Independence Day celebration on August 6th.

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