World Cup Qualifier: Haiti comes from behind to defeat Saint Lucia 2-1

Haiti emerged victorious as it got the best out of Saint Lucia 2-1 in Les Grenadiers’ first qualification game for the 2026 FIFA World Cup on Thursday at Wildey Turf in Bridgetown, Barbados.

Although Les Grenadiers put up a somewhat mediocre performance, they still managed to defeat Saint Lucia, coming from behind to win 2-1 in their first 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifying game Thursday evening at the Wildey Turf in Bridgetown, Barbados. The victory was secured thanks to a scrappy 77th-minute winning goal from fan-favorite Duckens Nazon after Haiti was down 0-1 at half-time.

Saint Lucia opened the scoring in the 18th minute after Haitian left-back Duke Lacroix gave the ball away in the defense. Saint Lucian midfielder Cannigia Elva intercepted Lacroix’s bad pass before driving a low shot into the net. It was Lacroix’s first game with Haiti.

Center-back Jean-Kévin Duverne leveled it up for Haiti in the 47th minute, heading Fafa Picault’s corner kick into the net. Haiti scored the winner in the 77th minute when Nazon clumsily dribbled past a sea of defenders, lost the ball, and then recovered it to shoot it past the opposing keeper.

Haiti shot the ball 33 times but only managed to score twice against a weak Saint Lucia side that sits in 165th position in FIFA’s ranking. Many of the players’ shots were well off target such as when Picault had a go from outside the box that went several yards wide in the 76th minute. Before that, in the 68th minute, Danley Jean-Jacques missed a golden opportunity when he skied the ball from the 18-yard box even though he was unmarked.

Coming from the break after half-time, Haiti had a much better performance in the second half with the inclusion of Jean-Jacques, who came in midfield for Carl Fred Sainté. He gave the team a little creativity that was missing during the first 45 minutes of the game. He linked well with the forwards, who could penetrate better through Saint Lucia’s defenders, who parked the bus due to seemingly their limited technical ability.

Haiti’s poor performance was expected since they haven’t been racking positive results in recent months, even against weak opponents. This victory marked the end of  Les Grenadiers‘ six-game winless run. They are also playing under a new head coach, Frenchman Sébastien Migné, who has not had enough time to instill his playing style into the players.

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