Sports

Duckie has mixed feelings about loss to Arnett Gardens

By Dwayne Richards
Observer writer

Thursday, November 15, 2018

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“It's always mixed feelings in everything. In everything there is always positive and there is always negative. What I have always maintained is that everything we do is preparation for the last game that we will play in the competition.”

Those were the sentiments expressed by Mount Pleasant Football Academy Head Coach Donovan Duckie as he spoke to reporters after the 0-1 loss to Arnett Gardens in the Red Stripe Premier League Sunday night. It was the first road loss for the premier league new boys who were top of the league at the start of the match day. They have now slipped all the way to fifth, indicating the closeness of the league at the moment.

Always the optimist, Duckie continues to see what is good with his team and was pleased with the overall performance of his charges, despite conceding late in the game.

“I am very pleased with what I saw here today. We knew that it was going to be psychological for us. I am very impressed with the way we played, [we were] very tactical. We knew exactly what Arnett wanted to do, we allowed them to do some things and we took away some things from them,” he explained.

In analysing the team play he thought that Mount Pleasant were on point based on the way Arnett Gardens normally play.

“I was very pleased with how we played them in transition. they attacked our flanks, I thought we were very disciplined, (we were) unfortunate to have lost in almost dire time and we gave up what you would consider to be a soft goal, but it's a work in progress.”

Lessons have been learned that will help the team going forward, he assured, as the league approaches the end of the first of three rounds.

“For me, there is more positive to be taken away from the game than the loss. We might have lost the three points, but we did not lose the lesson and these are things that we want to take back to work on. So in the next game we'll make amends, but it was a good game today (Sunday).”

The head coach for Jamaica's Under-23 team was also full of praise for Arnett Gardens and their supporters who turned out in their numbers to help create an electric atmosphere at the Anthony Spaulding Sports Complex.

“Full credit to Arnett Gardens. they kept us in the game, kept us on edge, the game was very competitive and the fans turned out — It was a spectators' treat and this is what football should be about in Jamaica. The stage, the psychological aspect, the mental pressure that these players and staff have to deal with week in week out, it was a good game for us it, was a good game for them.

“I am very excited about what I have seen here today because it would be the first time in an atmosphere like this. I am very pleased with our composure. We are going to make mistakes — we made a critical one, we paid and it is for us to work on our errors and rebound,” he continued.

Save and except for that one fatal error in the third minute of added time that cost them all three points, Duckie believes his boys did not put a foot wrong in the “Jungle”.

“Ninety-nine per cent of the game went exactly how we wanted the game to go. One per cent we erred and we paid for it. We have to go back, continue to work, our confidence is always intact because we are professionals. This is something we are cultivating, so we have to look pass this one and look to the next one,” he said with optimism.

Mount Pleasant are now in fifth place on goal difference but tied on 17 points with three other teams. Tivoli Gardens, Arnett Gardens, and the UWI FC. The UWI have a game in hand and could separate themselves from that pack when they take on Waterhouse FC today.

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