Saintfiet, who was hired in December after former manager Stephen Hart was fired, had originally named Jones to the team that will face Suriname and Haiti this week in playoff qualifiers for this summer’s CONCACAF Gold Cup, but said on Sunday that the winger/defender didn’t show up to training this weekend.
“I spoke with him individually and he did not show up at all for the camp,” Saintfiet told Wired 868. “So I think he has no interest to help his country to qualify.”
Saintfiet said that Jones was excused from Trinidad & Tobago’s friendlies against Nicaragua last week due to his long club season with the MLS Cup champion Sounders, but was upset with the 25-year-old after he learned that he played in a friendly with his former club W Connection against Haiti last Friday.
“Joevin is here on holiday and Joevin played, two days ago, a friendly with W Connection against Haiti,” said Saintfiet. “So if his club had no problem with him playing a friendly match with a club where he is not registered, I see no problem why he cannot play for his national team.
“I had a face-to-face communication with him. I said take a few days off and see you on Jan. 1. I told him where and when and which time [to enter] camp and he never called or informed us in any way that he would not show up.”
Saintfiet also said that Molino, who, along with Jones, was punished in September after breaking camp ahead of a World Cup qualifier, asked not to be named to the roster for this month’s qualifiers.
“[Molino] said he was not available for his country at that point in time,” Saintfiet said. “He told me he didn’t feel motivated or ready for that. And later, I [heard] he played games at lower league or social level.”
Trinidad and Tobago were forced into a playoff to qualify for the Gold Cup after a poor performance at the Caribbean Cup last year. It must win the three-team group against Haiti and Suriname in order to move onto a playoff against the fifth-place finisher from the upcoming Copa Centroamericano for a Gold Cup berth.