Deniche Hill On Football, Guyana Match & More

March 22, 2023 | 0 Comments

[Written by Stephen Wright]

Deniche Hill believes he can play a key role for Bermuda in their upcoming Concacaf Nations League football matches and help keep hopes alive of reaching the Gold Cup.

Bermuda face Guyana in a “must-win” game at the Flora Duffy Stadium on Saturday [March 25] before travelling to the Dominican Republic to play group leaders Haiti in their final League B group B match three days later.

Third-place Bermuda must finish second in the group to advance to the 12-team preliminary event for the Gold Cup, where three qualifying spots will be available.

Guyana are in second place, two points above Bermuda in the four-team group, which also includes Montserrat.

A format change to the next Nations League, which starts in September, means no team will be relegated.

“Guyana is a must-win match if we want to qualify for the Gold Cup,” Hill told Bernews. “Hopefully, I can get some more minutes and help the team.

“A win will give us a chance of qualifying [for the preliminaries]. If we can achieve a positive result against Haiti in our final game, we could have a clean run to the Gold Cup.”

Hill, who plays for Leicester City Under-21, made his Bermuda debut against Haiti at home in the Nations League in June last year, coming on a second-half substitute and is hungry for more opportunities.

He is among several talented teenagers named in coach Kyle Lightbourne’s 23-man squad, including Sincere Hall, who plays for Sky Bet Championship side Hull City, and Harry Twite, who attends Repton School in Derbyshire, which boasts a respected football programme.

“We have a talented young group,” Hill, 19, said. “It’s positive for Bermuda to have young players like me and Sincere doing well in the UK.

“It’s been great getting to know senior players like Nahki [Wells] and Danté [Leverock], being able to pick their brains and seeing how they operate at the international level. Hopefully, I can follow in their footsteps and do even better.”

Hill had a successful trial at Leicester during pre-season after impressing their under-21 coach Ben Petty – who had been invited to the island by the BFA – while training with the national team last summer.

The left-back was already studying at Brooke House College in Leicestershire and impressed in two pre-season friendlies and a handful of under-21 matches before being offered a professional contract.

“Initially, it was hard because I didn’t play any games until December as there were problems with my paperwork,” Hill said.

“Our December schedule was hectic [after the World Cup break]; I had to dive right in. Once I became acclimatised to the tempo and intensity, I did pretty well. Hopefully, I can finish the season well and kick on.

“It’s been a dream come true and a bit overwhelming, being around some of the most famous faces in football. Hopefully, I can push into [manager] Brendan Rodgers’s first team in the next few years.”

A former Hamilton Parish youth team player, Hill has benefited from the guidance of his father, Corey Hill, a former Bermuda forward based in the UK, who works as a recruitment agent for Brooke House and a scout for the BFA.

“Having my dad around is really helpful,” Hill added. “He’s always giving me advice, telling me what I need to improve, always showing me my clips. I implement his advice the best I can.”

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