Champions Portmore United tackle Waterhouse in marquee matchup

BY HOWARD WALKER
Observer senior reporter
walkerh@jamaicaobserver.com

Sunday, November 10, 2019

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Struggling champions Portmore United host leaders Waterhouse FC today in the marquee matchup of the Red Stripe Premier League at the Spanish Town Prison Oval, looking to really kick-start their campaign after a poor start.

Match time is 3:00 pm.

In the other games set for 3:00 pm starts, Tivoli Gardens host Molynes United; Vere United entertain Cavalier; Humble Lion tackle the University of The West Indies (UWI) and Mount Pleasant travel to Dunbeholden FC.

On Monday, Harbour View welcome Arnett Gardens to the Compound for an 8:00 pm game.

But today, all eyes will be focused on the feature match as Portmore, who are sitting in ninth position with 11 points and still searching to find their groove, face a Waterhouse outfit perched pretty atop the 12-team league on 23 points.

Portmore United, who have been a model of consistency over the last two seasons, have had a dismal start by their standards, having won just three times from 10 games.

They have tasted defeat five times already, which is the same number they suffered last season from 38 games.

Although still early, Portmore United must start a run that will take them into the top half of the league, which would ease mounting pressure on Head Coach Ricardo “Bibi” Gardner, who replaced Shavar Thomas, the man who led club to the title in the last two years.

But things won't be that easy for Portmore United as they face a well-organised Waterhouse team on a mission to end their two-year bridesmaid status.

Waterhouse are yet to beat Portmore in their last four meetings from last season and only succeeded once from eight matches over the last two years.

Now is the ideal time for Waterhouse to set things right being the in-form team, but there is a feeling Portmore are about to hit top form.

Waterhouse will again look towards the likes of Captain Keithy Simpson, five-goal top-scorer Stephen Williams, Kenroy Howell, Nicholy Finlayson, Ricardo Thomas, Shawn Lawes, Colorado Murray, Mark Miller, Tramaine Stewart and Andre Moulton for victory.

Portmore United will hope that Cory Burke, Rondee Smith, Shai Smith, Andre Lewis, Lamar Walker, Emelio Rousseau, Tevin Shaw, Damian Williams, Ryan Wellington and Osani Ricketts can produce the goods.

Meanwhile, second-placed Molynes United, on 19 points, travel to the Edward Seaga Sports Complex to play 10th-placed Tivoli Gardens on eight points at 3:00 pm.

The promoted Molynes United, having won their first six games, have lost their last three matches and could suffer their fourth-consecutive defeat to a desperate Tivoli Gardens outfit looking to move away from the relegation zone.

Tivoli Gardens, meantime, are just a point above the drop zone despite playing pretty good football, and they could get it right today.

There is a general feeling that the promoted Molynes United's debut surprise run has faded. But even though they have been on the receiving end, they have been playing quite well, but must be wary or they could be staring down the barrell of a fourth-straight defeat.

In another fixture, third-placed Humble Lion welcome second from bottom The University of the West Indies (UWI) to Effortville Community Centre. Humble Lion, the Clarendon standard-bearers, are in third on 17 points, while The UWI are 11th on seven points.

The Andrew Price-coached Humble Lion have won three of their last five games while losing just once and seemed to have found their mojo and could inflict further damage on The UWI.

At the Royal Lakes Complex, fourth-placed Mount Pleasant on 16 points will also be aiming to stay in touch with the leaders when they tackle Dunbeholden FC sitting in eighth spot on 11 points.

The St Ann-based Mount Pleasant are the hottest team around and will be hunting their fourth consecutive win and their fifth overall. Coach Paul “Tegat” Davis has them up and running, and they will be hard to deny even playing away.

Dunbeholden is a tough unit, and despite playing well, they have not got the deserved results. Today's will be another tough game, which all things being equal, Mount Pleasant should emerge victorious.

In the fifth game today, cellar team Vere United, on seven points, host sixth-placed Cavalier (13 points) at the Wembley Centre of Excellence in Clarendon. The promoted Vere United have won just once all season and it is no surprise they are at the bottom of the league. They have found goalscoring an issue and are struggling to come to term with top-flight football.

Cavalier, on the other hand, have won just once in their last five games and just three times all season but should prove too hot to handle for Vere United.

Today's games

3:00pm Dunbeholden FC vs Mount Pleasant FA @ Royal Lakes

3:00pm Humble Lion FC vs UWI FC @ Effortville Community Centre

3:00pm Portmore United FC vs Waterhouse FC @ Prison Oval

3:00pm Tivoli Gardens FC vs Molynes United FC @ Edward Seaga Complex

3:00pm Vere United FC vs Cavalier FC @ Wembley Centre of Excellence

Monday

8:00pm Harbour View FC vs Arnett Gardens FC @ Harbour View Stadium


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