Bethlehem Steel FC’s Cory Burke got his first international cap and turned in a good shift, but two costly mistakes from Jamaica’s defense saw the Reggae Boyz go out of the 2018 World Cup Qualifying round with a whimper instead of a bang. Jamaican head coach Winfried Schäfer was removed from duty only hours before kickoff for allegedly “unplugg(ing) the equipment cable of a media worker conducting an interview with the team's manager, Roy Simpson.” Assistant coach Miguel Coley got the nod in Schäfer’s absence.
The Philadelphia Union’s Andre Blake got the start in goal, and looked good even giving up two goals. The first goal came in the 68th minute when Kevin Lafrance got the lucky redirect of a through ball and put it on net.
The defense should have done better here. Wes Morgan should have marked Max Hilaire and Adrian Mariappa should have marked Lafrance, but Morgan instead initially dropped back with Lafrance and only ran toward Hilaire after he received the ball. This left Mariappa too far out to do anything on the wide open Lafrance, who didn’t miss when presented with the opportunity.
The second goal came late after a few good chances from Jamaica were just off target. In the 88th minute, Duckens Nazon split the Jamaican center backs and put another one in past Andre Blake.
Both teams had already been eliminated from World Cup Qualifying, so it was good to see Coley tinker with the lineup a bit. Clayton Donaldson was sat in favor of Cory Burke, who put in a solid 73 minutes of work for Jamaica. He had 4 shots, 1 shot on goal, and was 100% (4 for 4) on passing for the evening. His best chance came in the 56th minute when he missed connecting on a diving header that would have been on an all but empty net.
Jamaica lineup: Andre Blake; Alvas Powell (Rosario Harriott, 62’), Adrian Mariappa, Wes Morgan, Michael Hector; Shaun Francis, Je-Vaughn Watson (Omar Holness, 75’); Jobi McAnuff, Rodolph Austin; Cory Burke (Clayton Donaldson, 74’), Dever Orgill
Haiti lineup: Johnny Placide; Charles Hérold Jr., Andy Delice (Paulson Pierre Ozil, 70’), Carlens Arcus, Mechack Jérôme, Sébastien Thurière, Kevin Lafrance; Junior Delva (Max Hilaire, 59’), Ricardo Adé; Kervens Belfort Fils (Jonel Désiré, 49’), Duckens Nazon