Return of Ricardo Gardner

CONTRIBUTED ARTICLE

34 year old 1998 World Cup Veteran Ricardo “Bibi” Gardner has been recalled to the national team after a 3 year absence. Gardner will be looking to be part of Jamaica’s final squad heading into the 2012 Caribbean Cup in Antigua and Barbuda in December. The former Bolton Wanderer’s starlet last played for Jamaica in the 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup where he captained the team.

Ricardo Gardner has 109 caps for Jamaica while scoring 9 goals in the process since 1997. He is the 2nd most capped Jamaican player. The only player with more caps than Gardner is Ian Pepe Goodison with 120 caps. The 2006 Bolton Wanderers player of the season has played for Jamaica in the 1998, 2000, 2003 and 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup Tournaments.

The last time Ricardo Gardner played in the Caribbean Cup was in 1998 edition where Jamaica came out victorious as they won their 2nd Caribbean Cup title at the time beating Trinidad in the final 2-1. In that tournament Bibi scored in a 4-0 win over the Cayman Islands.

With Gardner being out of the national team for a while, it gives him an opportunity to show to coach Whitmore that his experience could be key not only in the Caribbean Cup but going forward into the final round of World Cup Qualifying. Bibi has played in 30 World Cup Qualifying matches and this chunk of experience could prove valuable for Jamaica as his advice and learning from mistakes could set Jamaica up pretty well going forward.

Ricardo Gardner one to keep an eye on !

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