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Bradley Wright-Phillips not joining Jamaica for upcoming World Cup qualifiers

Photo by Danny Wild/ USA Today Sports
Photo by Danny Wild/ USA Today Sports

HARRISON, N.J. — Bradley Wright-Phillips still has not made up his mind, but he will not be joining Jamaica for its upcoming World Cup qualifiers.

Wright-Phillips is staying with the New York Red Bulls during this upcoming international break instead of joining Jamaica because he has not yet made up his mind as to whether he wants to represent the Reggae Boyz. Jamaica has been interested in adding Wright-Phillips to its squad in recent months to bolster the chances of reaching the 2018 World Cup, but the 30-year-old English striker with Jamaican roots still does not know if he wants to play internationally.

For now, it’s club over country.

“I need a few more weeks,” said Wright-Phillips on Sunday after scoring the late winner in the Red Bulls’ 1-0 victory over D.C. United in the second leg of their Eastern Conference Semifinals series. “It just comes down to me. We’re in a tricky situation here with the playoffs and there’s just a lot more things that I have to think about it and talk to coaches.”

Jamaica was drawn into a tough Group B in the fourth round of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying that includes Costa Rica, Panama, and Haiti. The Reggae Boyz, who finished second at the Gold Cup this summer, play their first matches of the round in the upcoming days by taking on Panama at home on Nov. 13 and traveling to play Haiti four days later.

Wright-Phillips will not be part of the Jamaican squad, however, as he continues to weigh the decision. His primary focus right now is on replicating the goal-scoring success he had vs. D.C. United when the Red Bulls take on the Columbus Crew in the Eastern Conference Finals.

“It was a nice feeling, it was a nice relief for me personally. I just missed a chance before,” said Wright-Phillips. “Obviously any strikers doesn’t like missing chances. For Gonzalo (Veron) to put one on a plate for me, I was happy, it was a nice feeling.”

What do you think of Wright-Phillips’ decision not to represent Jamaica as of now? Happy that he is sticking with the Red Bulls? See him ultimately playing for the Reggae Boyz?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Doesn’t sound like he really wants to play for Jamaica..and with Barnes, Brown, Mattocks, Baliey (uncapped!), Beckford, Grabban they already have plenty of strikers not far from BWP’s level.

  2. Red Bulls better hope BWP does not go with Jamaica . Gilles Barnes after playing for them came back to Dynamo Gaded after spell with team.Too many games

  3. I know BWP hasn’t committed yet, and therefore isn’t considered a CONCACAF player. But this reminds me that I would love to see an in-depth article about the role MLS has played in the development of CONCACAF nations (outside of the US and Mexico). I think an argument could be made that over the last 20 years, MLS has had a bigger impact on moving nations like Jamaica, Canada, Costa Rica, Honduras, etc. forward than it has on the US. Just a thought.

    • I don’t that it’s had a bigger impact on those countries than the US but having another regional league playing at a reasonably high level (at least much higher than the leagues in those countries) certainly has helped.

      • Agreed Slow; MLS has had a greater impact on the development of US soccer than the other CONCACAF nations. My last point was poorly worded. MLS’s impact on the other CONCACAF nations seems, at first glance, to be greater; but that’s only if you consider the last 5-10 years. It has had a role in evening the playing field a bit more in CONCACAF (as evidenced by Mexico’s struggles in the last Hex and our struggles in ’15 Gold Cup).

        Maybe I have a selective memory, but I don’t remember worrying too much about Gold Cup group/early knockout round games or home qualifiers (outside of Mexico) in previous cycles (back to ’98, which is when I started following in earnest).

        Anyway, I still think it’d be interesting for SBI to do an in-depth article on it. Look at all the CONCACAF players in MLS now as compared to the league’s beginnings. Do some interviews, analyze some data, etc.

    • Well, I made that argument during the last round of qualifiers. I think there is definitely merit to it when you look at the rosters of CONCACAF teams and their players’ club teams.


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