Leaders Portmore United hunt sixth-straight win against Harbour View

By Sherdon Cowan
Observer staff reporter

Sunday, December 09, 2018

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Portmore United's rich form is expected to continue today, as the defending champions are heavily favoured to secure win number six on the trot at the expense of Harbour View FC, on match day 15 of the Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) at Spanish Town Prison Oval.

The game scheduled for a 3:00 pm kick-off is one of three early fixtures on the day. The others will see Mount Pleasant FA hosting University of the West Indies (UWI) FC at Drax Hall, and Montego Bay United welcoming Tivoli Gardens at Wespow Park.

In the day's late fixtures, Cavalier FC will play host to Reno FC at Stadium East at 5:00 pm, while the lowly Dunbeholden FC will travel to Drewsland for battle against Waterhouse FC at 7:00 pm.

Meanwhile, former champions Arnett Gardens, in fourth position on 23 points, and long-time rivals Humble Lion FC, who are in seventh on 19 points, are set to bring the curtains down on match day 15 in Monday night action at Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex tomorrow at 8:35.

For now all eyes will be on the champions, who hold a six-point gap atop the standings on 30 points with five consecutive wins under their belt, as they are currently on a six-match unbeaten run.

If form is anything to go by then the Shavar Thomas-coached team could increase their lead with a sixth-consecutive victory, and thus extend their unbeaten run to seven games, as a 2-0 first-round win against today's opponent will be fresh on their minds.

Harbour View, sitting in 11th position on 12 points, have been struggling to really find their footing in the competition, having lingered in the relegation zone from the start.

By all means, it will be another long day at the office for the “Stars of the East”, who have only two wins from 14 games so far this season.

The likes of Rondee Smith, Ricardo Morris, Chevany Willis and Javon East, among others, should make things even more difficult for the Ricardo Gardener-conditioned outfit, who will be hoping for much from youngsters Peter-Lee Vassell and Tyreek Magee and company.

St Ann fans should be feted by another entertaining fixture at Drax Hall between Mount Pleasant FA, in fifth on 22 points, and eighth-placed UWI FC on 17 points, who have both been finding a win hard to come by in recent times.

In fact, Mount Pleasant's last victory, which was a 1-0 scoreline against UWI FC, came four games ago, and a repeat of that scoreline or even better would be a welcome relief for the Donovan Duckie-conditioned team, which possesses enough fire power to blow away the opponents.

For UWI FC, today's contest will be an assignment to stem a five-game losing streak and keep themselves in contention to sneak back into a play-off position, as their dismal form has resulted in them falling miserably from the top half of the standings.

Sixth-placed Tivoli Gardens (20 points) will be smiling on their way to Wespow Park, where they came away 2-0 winners in their first-round meeting against Montego Bay United who are hovering close to the red zone in ninth on 15 points.

Both teams have been struggling for consistency, particularly Montego Bay United, who have only registered three wins so far this season, resulting in the club parting ways with Head Coach Vassell Reynolds.

Though it is a game that could go either way, Tivoli Gardens are favoured to once again come away with all three points as they aim to remain in close proximity to the leaders.

With 10th-placed Reno FC (12 points) also on the struggling end, Cavalier FC could extend their unbeaten run to six games with victory over the Westmoreland-based team that they defeated 2-0 in the first round.

Meanwhile the resurging Waterhouse, in second spot on 24 points, could maintain or even close the gap on leaders Portmore United if they falter, as they are heavily favoured to take all the marbles against cellar-dwellers Dunbeholden on nine points.

Waterhouse, like Portmore United, are currently enjoying a six-match unbeaten run, and if Dunbeholden fail to find goals and by extension hold firm for 90 minutes, then Marcel Gayle's side should end the day with a fourth-consecutive win.

The Michael Cohen-coached Dunbeholden have been playing good football for the most part but have failed to put those games to rest, and as a result of that, are now in danger of being sent back from whence they came.

Another good game is expected against last season's beaten finalist Waterhouse, and one can only hope that Dunbeholden will put in a complete performance to steal a win and begin their climb up the standings.

Today's games

3:00 pm Portmore United vs Harbour View @ Prison Oval

3:00 pm Mount Pleasant FA vs UWI FC @ Drax Hall Sports Complex

3:00 pm Montego Bay United vs Tivoli Gardens FC @ Wespow Park

5:00 pm Cavalier FC vs Reno FC @ Stadium East field

7:00 pm Waterhouse FC vs Dunbeholden FC @ Waterhouse Stadium

Tomorrow's schedule

8:35 pm Arnett Gardens FC vs Humble Lion FC @ Anthony Spaulding Sport Complex

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