Empire’s coach warns of the negative impact of fans on players

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Coach of the Cool & Smooth Empire football team, Vincent Samuel, believes the negative behavior by some of the team’s supporters is having a destructive result on the overall morale of the team. Speaking following the team’s 2-2 draw with Richie Rich Five Islands over the weekend, Samuel said the behavior makes it even more difficult for him, as coach, to reach the players. “Let’s take for instance, we had a situation where one guy [player] was coming off the bench for three consecutive games and scoring, and you know, as coaches when things work for you then you don’t normally change it.
But there are the odd individuals that are coming to him now and telling him he should be starting, and the coach don’t know what he is doing. He got his first start and he came up empty,” Samuel said. “There are individuals getting into the mind of the players and telling them this and telling them that and we’ve seen some negative things from certain individuals,” he added. Having won the top flight title a record 13 times, Empire currently sits at the bottom of the standings with just two points after seven appearances.
The performance represents the worst in the club’s history and has left some fans calling for Samuel to be sacked. “I wasn’t really expecting the kind of start we’ve had, and I was expecting much better as far as the start is concerned. The pressure is still coming, the negative comments are still coming, but in my estimation, where it pertains to the performance of the team is that if it had boiled down to the coaching staff and what the coaching staff is doing, we would have been a team.
And even though we would have been at the bottom of the table, we would have been the team, [winning] 4- 0, 5-0 and so forth,” the coach said. The national youth coach still believes his young squad can and will get the job done. “Realistically, I think we can get six more points to take us to eight, because we basically had some rough games coming down, where we got all the big teams one behind the other and we were able to draw with two. We lost one and the last one was because of some simple technical mistakes,” he said. “We have been working on these [mistakes] and I am hoping that, at this point in time, we could overcome that [hurdle],” Samuel added.
Empire will take on Sugar Ridge SAP in the feature match of Saturday’s double-header at the Antigua Recreation Grounds. SAP occupies the fourth position in the standings with 11 points, just three points off leaders Asot’s Arcade Parham.

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