THE pressure is mounting on coach Linval Dixon as Portmore United attempt to end their losing streak, but will have to do so against a potent-looking Tivoli Gardens outfit today at 7:00 pm at Ferdie Neita Park.
Portmore, champions in 1993, 2005, 2008 and 2012, have lost their three opening games which put them at the bottom of the Red Stripe Premier League without a point — unfamiliar territory for the perennial championship contenders.
Portmore have lost to Cavalier, Humble Lion and August Town and are the only team not to have scored a goal in the league. They also followed that up when they were knocked out of the All-Island Flow Champions Cup, losing 0-1 to Harbour View on Thursday.
However, Portmore still have a bunch of talented players in Stephen Williams, Damion Williams, Levaughn Williams, Ricardo Cousins, Ewan Grandison, Adrian Reid, Ricardo Morris and Rosario Edwards and could register their first win today.
Glendon 'Admiral' Bailey has Tivoli Gardens playing some wonderful attacking football and with national playmaker Kaemmar Daley pulling the strings in midfield, Portmore United must be careful or could slump to yet another defeat.
But Portmore United should be the hungrier of the two and are therefore fancied to get off the mark against a very good Tivoli Gardens outfit.
Champions Harbour View, who are second from bottom on one point, are also fancied to score their first win when they travel to seventh-placed Rivoli United on five points.
Harbour View will feel confident after eliminating Rivoli United from the all-island knockout competition recently and a repeat win is certainly not beyond them.
The promoted Spanish Town-based Rivoli United are one of three teams still unbeaten in the league, and with Devon Hodges finding his shooting boots along with Marcelino Blackburn and Valentine Gardner, could upset their more fancied rivals.
Joint leader Waterhouse FC on six points should be too much for August Town (five points) at Drewsland with the likes of Jermaine Anderson, Romario Campbell, Marvin Morgan, Lamar Nelson and Hugh Howell.
Cavalier and Humble Lion, both on six points, clash in a top-of-the-table match at Stadium East in what should be an evenly contested encounter.
Cavalier, with victories over big guns Portmore United and Waterhouse, lost to Boys' Town last week amidst rumours of internal problems. The David Laylor-coached team must return in a positive frame of mind or face the wrath of Humble Lion.
Meanwhile, Arnett Gardens (two points) host a Sporting Central Academy team (one point) and a spot above them in a match that should provide a lot of excitement at the Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex.