Waite frustrated, Peart pleased after stalemate

Tuesday, February 19, 2019


WITH the regular season winding down and the result of each match becoming increasingly important, the Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) contest between fifth-place Arnett Gardens FC and sixth-place UWI FC appeared large on Sunday.

Both teams were aware of seventh-place Tivoli Gardens' 2-1 loss to fourth-place Mount Pleasant FA earlier in the day, and would have been anxious to secure all three points to bolster their chances of securing a spot in the top six.

Arnett entered the game on the back of successive wins, while UWI had drawn their last two.

Head Coach Jerome Waite might have thought the three points would go Arnett Gardens' way, after they took a comfortable 2-0 lead courtesy of strikes from Michealos Martin (4th) and Jamiel Hardware (49th). However, he was left frustrated at the end as his team sqaundered the lead and had to share the spoils with a team they have yet to beat this season.

Fabian McCarthy (59th) and Patrick Brown (74th) ensured UWI left Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex with something to smile about.

Waite pointed to a lack of focus on the part of his players which resulted in Arnett Gardens settling with one point instead of three.

“We started out with a purpose. We got an early goal from Martin but away from that, the team still continued to lapse in concentration as the game went on. The second half was a situation of how well we play in defence and maintain organisation, but as a result of that (poor defending), UWI ended up getting two goals that resulted in the game drawing 2-2,” Waite lamented.

“We should have won this game. What happened is that we let back UWI in this game; but it's always a situation where players have to understand the importance of high-level concentration and how well we possess the ball,” he added.

Andrew Peart, UWI's head coach, took more pleasure in assessing the performance of his players.

“For the first 23 games we played, every time the opponents scored we lost those games. For us to be a goal down then two goals down away and come back with a point, is very good from us,” Peart said.

“This is the third game in succession we are coming from behind. Yes, it's a situation for concern that we are conceding first, but the effort to get back the scores level is very good from them, so we just have to use this and move on. I think we could have won it in the end, but it wasn't to be,” he reasoned.

UWI's next game against Tivoli Gardens could determine if they will remain in the play-off spot, should they secure what would be their first win in four games.

“They (Tivoli) are four points behind us in seventh, so that game is a tough one and is pretty much a six-pointer to decide who have some comfortable room for the top six position. There are big things to come from us; we just have to keep working,” Peart noted.

Meanwhile, Arnett Gardens will have a bigger task on their hand, as their next fixture will be a tough away assignment to leaders Portmore United.

—Dwayne Richards