Matthew Briggs (pictured) has committed to playing for Guyana In a friendly against visiting Grenada on March 29, 2015. (Photo courtesy of Colchester United)
GEORGETOWN, Guyana – Guyana raised the stakes for its March 29 friendly against visiting Grenada, announcing that two players with English Premier League (EPL) experience are expected to join the Golden Jaguars.
The newcomers are left-back Matthew Briggs, who is currently on loan at Colchester United from Millwall, and Bolton Wanderers midfielder Neil Danns.
Briggs became the youngest player to ever appear in an EPL match, when on May 13, 2007, he took the field for Fulham against Middlesbrough at 16-years-old and 65 days, a record that still stands. The 24-year-old has represented England at the under-16 through under-23 levels. His grandmother is Guyanese.
Danns, whose grandfather is Guyanese, has spent a majority of his career with English Championship sides, but has played in five EPL games – three for Blackburn Rovers and two for Birmingham City.
“What attracted me to the set up was seeing the progress of the national team and ambition shown to me for the future,” said Danns, 32. “It is also a great opportunity to represent the country of my heritage and will allow me to gain further knowledge of my heritage and culture, which I know myself and family, will be proud of.”
Guyana head coach Jamaal Shabazz expressed satisfaction with upgrading his squad.
“We’ve been after these two guys for some time now and finally we’ve been able to tie up the deal and were very happy to have them,” Shabazz said. “I think they will add quality to the crew that we have.”