Vere United gets first JPL win, clear from relegation zone
Vere United's Lamard Neil (second left) chases Faulkland FC's Obrien Robinson in Sunday's JPL first round game played at Wespow Park in Tucker St James. Neil scored the game's only goal as Vere United won for the first time this season. (Photo: Paul A Reid)

ST JAMES, Jamaica – Vere United moved clear of the relegation zone of the Jamaica Premier League after scoring their first win of the season, beating fellow cellar dwellers Faulkland FC 1-0 at Wespow Park on Sunday.

An added-time goal from Lamard Neil was the difference as the Clarendon club improved to 10 points, six more than Faulkland FC and Chapleton Maroons who are both on three points each and firmly in the drop zone.

It was the third goal for Vere United who have five 0-0 draws and have conceded only eight goals in their 12 games played, among the most frugal in the league.

Jermaine Douglas, a member of the Vere United coaching team, was happy for the win and told OBSERVER ONLINE he hoped the win would be the catalyst for more wins.

He said the goal took a long time to come because, “I think the guys were a bit impatient. We have not been scoring a lot of goals this season and I think anxiety is setting in whenever we get in front of goal, but we got one today and hopefully the composure will return.”

Douglas said he thought they had the better of play for most of the game, “especially in the first half we had a lot of time in the midfield and we were getting a lot of space down the flanks but we were not capitalizing. Either the passes were over hit but eventually, we got one right and we are grateful for the three points.”

Leacroft Lettman, the Faulkland FC coach described the loss as “tough”.

“As the game came down to the end and a little loss of concentration cost us the game.”

“We created some chances but could not get them into the net, if we had gotten the goal that was called for handball that would have changed the whole dynamics of the game, but it’s a tough game, especially coming off that draw we are putting in some work.”

Faulkland FC thought they had gotten a goal minutes before Vere United scored but the goal was ruled out for a handball.

After a drab first half befitting two teams in the lower half of the tables, it took almost 70 minutes for the teams to create some fireworks as Neil got into the Faulkland FC area but his low cross sailed across the area.

Quick thinking by the Faulkland FC goalkeeper David Swaby prevented a goal as he came off his line in the 77th minute to intercept a lofted pass.

Faulkland FC came close in the 80th minute when a corner aimed for just under the crossbar was pushed over for a corner by Vere United’s goalkeeper Rojae Williams.

With time running out and the game appeared headed for a draw, the Faulkland FC defense failed to get out a ball that fell to Neil who was left unguarded at the left post and he headed the ball into the goal from about four yards out.

Paul Reid

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