Leaders Portmore brace for Dunbeholden in St Catherine derby

Sunday, November 18, 2018

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Defending champions Portmore United could increase their lead atop the standings of the Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) today when they battle neighbours Dunbeholden FC in a St Catherine derby at Royal Lakes Complex at 3:00 pm.

In other early fixtures, eighth-placed Humble Lion (13 points) will host ninth-placed Reno FC (11 points) at Effortville Community Centre, while sixth-placed Waterhouse FC (14 points) travelling to the west for action against 10th-placed Montego Bay United (10 points) at Wespow Park.

Second-placed the University of the West Indies (UWI) FC on 17 points will play away to fifth-placed Mount Pleasant, also on 17 points, while fourth-placed Tivoli Gardens (17 points) will be at home to seventh-placed Cavalier FC (13 points) in the day's late contests scheduled for 7:00 pm.

Meanwhile, former champions Arnett Gardens in third on 17 points and 11th-placed Harbour View FC (nine points) are set to bring the curtains down on the first round in Monday night action at the Compound tomorrow at 8:35 pm.

But for now, all eyes will be on the champions, who recently regained the top spot on 18 points when they registered only their second win from six home games with a 1-0 scoreline over Montego Bay United.

If that is anything to go by, then it could mean that Portmore United would have had better fortunes playing away which should be a major concern for their struggling opponent, who are rooted at the foot of the standing on seven points.

By all means, it will be a long day for Dunbeholden, who are coming of three successive defeats, and the likes of Rondee Smith and company should make things even more difficult for the promoted outift.

It should be a very entertaining encounter in Clarendon between Humble Lion and Reno FC, and the points could go either way if not being shared. However, based on current form and home court advantage, Humble Lion are slightly favoured to come up trumps and continue their steady march up the standings.

After earlier struggling to find a win, the Glendon 'Admiral' Bailey-coached team chalked up all of three on the trot, followed by a goalless stalemate against Cavalier on last and they will be aiming to make it a five-match unbeaten run with victory today.

Reno FC had also opened up a three-match win streak between match days six and eight but have gradually lost their way since and will be hoping to regain that form to stay afloat.

Sixth-placed Waterhouse FC have drawn three of their last four fixtures, with the other being a 1-0 win over UWI in a rescheduled fixture on Thursday and they will be riding high on that performance as they take aim at Montego Bay United who are winless in their last six fixtures.

Montego Bay United's run of form has sparked some concerns for head coach Vassell Reynolds, who will be that his team would rediscover their shooting boots from earlier in the season when they registered their only two victories so far.

St Ann fans should be feted by another entertaining fixture at Drax Hall as both Mount Pleasant and UWI FC, who have been holding good form in recent times, seek to bounce back to winning ways following identical 0-1 defeats to Arnett Gardens and Waterhouse FC respectively.

Like Portmore United, Mount Pleasant has not had the best of form at home, but the Donovan Duckie-conditioned team possess enough firepower to cause some problems for Andrew Peart and his university team, who are by no means short on talent.

Finally, Cavalier, who have rapidly descended from a mid-table position into the lower half, will be bolstered by the return of Jamoi Topey and Nique Daley from Under-20 duties for their clash against Tivoli Gardens.

Both teams have an identical record of a loss and a draw in their last two fixtures, and today's contest represents the perfect opportunity for one or the other to signal a turnaround of form heading into the second round.

— Sherdon Cowan

Today's games

3:00pm Dunbeholden FC vs Portmore United @ Royal Lakes Complex

3:00pm Humble Lion FC vs Reno FC @ Effortville Community Centre

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

7:00pm Mount Pleasant FA vs UWI FC @ Drax Hall Sports Complex

7:00pm Tivoli Gardens FC vs Cavalier FC @ Edward Seaga Complex

Tomorrow's schedule

8:35 pm Harbour View FC vs Arnett Gardens FC @ Harbour View Stadium

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