Rivals Arnett, Tivoli clash in race for play-off berth


Rivals Arnett, Tivoli clash in race for play-off berth

...Champions Portmore welcome relegation-bound Vere

Sunday, January 26, 2020

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Fierce rivals Arnett Gardens and Tivoli Gardens will clash in a crucial encounter at the Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex at 8:00 pm as both teams are in a fight for that final sixth play-off spot in one of four Red Stripe Premier league games on today.

In the other games today at 3:00 pm, Portmore United host Vere United at the Spanish Town Prison Oval and Molynes United travel to The University of the West Indies (UWI). At 5:00 pm, Cavalier FC entertain Harbour View at Stadium East.

On Monday, second-placed Mount Pleasant, on 41 points, play third-placed Humble Lion (36 points) at Drax Hall, starting at 8:00 pm.

With the FLOW Concacaf Caribbean Club Championship set for next week, local organisers brought forward the Waterhouse FC versus Dunbeholden FC game in which Waterhouse won 3-1 last Friday and opened up a five-point lead with 46 points.

Dunbeholden remained in fifth spot on 35 points and they will nervously be watching the match between Arnett Gardens (34 points) in sixth position and Tivoli Gardens (32 points) in seventh spot.

Former champions Arnett Gardens have lost their last two games and will be aiming to halt that losing streak. In two outings with Tivoli Gardens, they won the first 1-0, but lost the second game 1-3.

Tivoli Gardens have won their last three games and are charging to the top six play-off position and will be looking to leapfrog Arnett Gardens into the last play-off position. The stage is set for another epic battle in the 'Jungle'.

Meanwhile champions Portmore United, sitting in fourth spot on 36 points, host bottom-placed Vere United (16 points), who look set to be relegated.

The slow-starting Portmore United are on a roll having won six of their last eight games as they fine-tune preparations for the play-off of the RSPL. Vere United, on the other hand, will have their hands full and if they are to avoid the drop, they must start winning.

They have not won in their last 10 games suffering five defeats, while drawing five times. But winning won't be easy as they have won just twice from 23 games.

At Stadium East Complex, two teams battling to keep their slim play-off hopes alive clash in a mammoth encounter as eighth-placed Cavalier (31 points) take on ninth-placed Harbour View (30 points). Both teams are three and four points, respectively, adrift of the last play-off spot and they are aware of the importance of a win today.

Cavalier are very inconsistent winning three of their last seven games, while losing four times. Harbour View are just as inconsistent, losing three of their last seven games while winning three times. Both teams have shared victories this season with Harbour View winning the first encounter 3-0 and Cavalier taking revenge with a 2-1 win.

If the UWI are to survive relegation then they must beat the team sitting just above them and that's Molynes United.

UWI are in 11th spot on 17 points, while Molynes United are in 10th place with 24 points. This is a clash between two of the three relegation battlers and neither can afford to lose. A loss for UWI would almost guarantee relegation as they would fall 10 points behind Molynes United, while a win would see them close the gap to just four points.

In the Mount Pleasant-Humble Lion match, win for either team pushes them closer to the play-offs. In their two previous encounters, Mount Pleasant are undefeated, drawing the first match 1-1 before winning the second 2-1.

— Howard Walker

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