FRONTRUNNERS Vibe CT 105 W Connection may find
themselves up against it
this evening when they host Joe Public at Industry Park from 6 p.m.
The game is one of four matches on offer today
as action in the fourth round of the
Professional Football League kicks off at 6 p.m. at venues across the country.
In the another key fixture, joint leaders Police,
level with WCFC on seven points, travel
to the João Havelange Centre of Excellence to face Caledonia AIA FC (4 pts).
Third-placed Arima Fire Service (6 pts) also host CL Financial San Juan Jabloteh (4
pts) at the Arima Municipal Stadium while the winless Doc's Khelwalaas visit struggling
defending champions Defence Force at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.
But the WCFC/Public match-up promises to be
one of the most intriguing, given the
history of the two teams dating back to last season.
WCFC, in their first year in the big league
last season, met the Eastern Lions in two
finals last year apart from their four regular season match-ups.
Today's rewards are not quite so attractive
with only three points going to the victors.
But WCFC coach Stuart Charles-Février, having invested heavily in Brazilian talent,
will have to earn his keep by continuing to bring in the results.
To date, José María Manoel has
proven his worth by scoring three goals in as many
games. But his countrymen, at least those with the responsibility for the offensive side of
the proceedings, will have to follow his lead soon and don their goalscoring boots as
well if the club is to keep its place atop the table.
However, if WCFC are to catch the Public, today is as good a time as any.
The Tunapuna-based club, led by last year's
"Player of the Year" Arnold Dwarika,
have started slowly this season.
In fact, they now stand third to last on the
eight-team table with just four points from
their three matches to date.
Newly-appointed coach Kenny Joseph-mindful
of the managerial axe which club
owner Jack Austin Warner has wielded so often in the past-will be hoping for a revival
Police, meanwhile, will also be keen to keep up their pace.
Thanks to a goal from midfielder Neri Joseph
in their last game against WCFC, they
earned a 1-1 draw to maintain their joint leadership position.
But against a strong-willed AIA unit, Police
strikers Alvin Boisson and Dexter Cyrus
will have to get the job done today.
FIRST POINT FOR THE ARMY
VIBE CT 105 W Connection and Police could not
find a way of separating themselves
at the top of the Professional League standings as they could only muster a 1-1 draw at
the Arima Municipal Stadium in a third round encounter yesterday.
In fact, Arima Fire, (third with six points),
were the only side capable of breaking the
deadlock on the day, edging cellar-placed and pointless Doc's Khelwalaas 2-1, while
reigning champions Defence Force (seventh, one point) were held to a 1-1 draw by
CL Financial San Juan Jabloteh and Courts Caledonia AIA (fourth with four points)
and sixth-placed Joe Public (four points) finished with a similar score at Concacaf
Centre of Excellence, Macoya.
Goals were hard to come by even as last season's
leading goalscorer Arnold Dwarika
netted his third in two matches to save Public at home.
Vincentian Jean Marie Emerson had coach Jamaal
Shabaaz, formerly of Public, smiling
after 20 minutes when he put Caledonia ahead.
Dwarika grabbed the equaliser five minutes
into the second half.
Following a 10-minute delay because of a power outage, Stokely Mason shot overbar
after combining with Dwarika, but both Michael McComie and ex-Public custodian
Donovan Thomas deserved credit for pulling off some good saves.
At Arima, the lawmen went ahead through Neri
Joseph before Brazilian import Jose
Manoel snatched the equaliser with a left-footer from just inside the 18-yard box.
Al Ansar striker Peter Prosper, currently on loan with Connection, almost left Police
wounded when his effort came off the upright in the dying stages.
At Mucurapo, Defence Force captain Hutson Charles
would have preferred three
points on his return from retirement, but some desperate defending by the Jabloteh
defence held the score together.
Jabloteh, now fifth with four points, appeared
to be gunning for victory when national
striker Hector Sam netted his first goal of the season after just four minutes. With the
Army still settling, Tobagonian Rolston James fought his way into a good position
before crossing from the right for Sam to head downwards into the right corner past his
national teammate Ross Russell in goal.
The San Juan side failed to capitalise on the
good start and the Army enjoyed the
better of the remaining half.
Midfielder Carlos Edwards, fresh from a full
90 minutes for T&T in their 1-0 win over
the Dominican Republic on Sunday, collected from Russell Pope before rifling a low
shot past goalkeeper Heiber Figueoa from inside the 18- yard box.
Both Edwards and Sam are currently on the "wanted
list" of English club Wrexham.
Jabloteh's defence, which included Don Morris, playing his first match after receiving a
gun shot wound last year, was kept busy throughout. Army's Anton Pierre saw his
effort come off the woodwork just after the half interval.
Kelshall Alexander and Dennis Lawrence had
near misses for the soldiers and Sam too
narrowly missed out on a winner for Jabloteh in the latter stages.
Shabazz in the Lions' den
THE feature game in the two-week-old 2000 Professional
Football League pits two
unbeaten teams against each other with everything to play for.
Vibe CT 105 W Connection travel to Arima to
take on Police from 6 p.m. in a game
that promises to set the tone for the rest of the season.
Victory for either team, both with two wins
to date, would give the winner an outright
lead atop the eight-team table early in the race for the $500,000.
WCFC, who sprang a surprise on local fans in
the pre-season when they imported 11
Brazilian players, seem to have a slight edge.
The men from Pele's country made an impact
in the first game of the season, accounting
for all three goals in a win over defending champs Defence Force.
But last week, when the Samba men did not dance,
skipper Reynold Carrington and
Valencius Joseph came to the team's rescue to keep them atop the table.
The lawmen, meanwhile, who, like the Army,
cannot have any foreigners in their fold
have also started well this season and will be hoping to continue in that vein.
And if marksmen Dexter Cyrus and Alvin Boisson
don their scoring boots today,
WCFC will have to watch out.
However, a match with even more local interest
is carded for the João Havelange
Centre of Excellence where former Joe Public coach Jamal Shabazz will enter into the
Lions' den at the helm of the team he coaches in the current season, Caledonia AIA
FC, from 6 p.m.
With AIA unable to field a pro team last season,
Shabazz-the founder of the
Morvant-based outfit-took over the reins at the Public and steered them to another
But AIA are back in the top flight this year
and Shabazz, returning 'home' to the
Morvant-based squad he has led since its very first year in competitive soccer.
The man who replaced Shabazz at Joe Public,
Kenny Joseph, will also be out to prove
that he is a worthy successor.
And with last year's "Player of the Year",
Arnold Dwarika, in his pack, Joseph may
well get his wish.
But the Eastern Stallions, as they are sometimes
called by their adoring fans, have a
reputation for toppling giants. And, led by Vincentian hitman Kendall Velox-one of the
players who followed Shabazz into and out of the Lions' den-they may well add a
coveted scalp to their hitlist today.
In the other games today, the Army will be
hoping to rebound from their opening two
losses when they host CL Financial San Juan Jabloteh at the Hasely Crawford Stadium
from 6 p.m. while Doc's Khelwalaas host Arima Fire Service at their Caroni ground in
the only early match today at 4 p.m.
Monday April 10th, 2000
By SHAUN FUENTES
VIBE CT 105 W Connection president David John
Williams has denied claims that eight Brazilians players
currently attached to his club have been illegally registered with the Professional League.
Williams was puzzled yesterday following word
that PFL opponents were questioning the signing of the "samba
boys" following Connection's 3-0 drubbing of reigning champions Defence Force last Wednesday.
It is understood that Army officials following
last week's defeat questioned why the players were registered as
having not played with another club in Brazil.
Three of the Brazilians are attached to Connection's under-20 team and are eligible to play in the PFL while nine
others are registered on the Connection PFL roster.
Seven of them include Jose Manoel, who netted
a double; Gefferson Goulart, the other scorer; Jose Luiz Seabra;
Ronaldo Viana; Waldinei Dos Santos; Renato Pereira; and Fabiano Agripino, who was registered as being
transferred from Joe Public; were in the team against the Army.
PFL Commisioner Colin Prevatt said at the weekend
the League were aware of the situation, but were positive
there was no wrong doing and would refrain from any action until a club can come up with evidence to support
"I cannot see what the problem is. There has
always been stigma of us being a 'fete match' team. I thought that we
have been trying our best to improve the League and make it popular. What have we done to deserve such
"I don't know if it is that people are afraid
"A lot of people felt that we would have brought 12 players who were not of good quality. The thing is that we
went deep into the country areas of Brazil and looked at more that 100 players before choosing the cream of the
crop in the six days we spent there.
The mere fact is that we beat the Army 3-0
and people were looking for us to fail," said Williams.
Connection are currently awaiting international clearance before using the services of Lebanon-based striker Peter
"We have gone through difficult times before
and I expect people to say more things when Peter Prosper lines up
with us. We are awaiting international clearance before he can play on loan from Al Ansar for six months. If I get
that clearance today (Saturday) he will be playing for us in the next match," added Williams.
VIBE CT 105 W Connection and Police remained
the only unbeaten teams in the local Professional League after
second round matches were completed yesterday on a day which also saw Joe Public achieving their first win of
Like defending champions Defence Force, things
didn't go according "to plans" for powerhouses CL Financial
San Juan Jabloteh, 1-0 losers to the lawmen, and Connection, who had a goal turned down and a penalty
disallowed in a match against Arima Fire where they were expected to come away handsome winners . But "Fire"
showed they were not that easy to be extinguished.
Defence Force lost their second straight outing,
4-2 to Courts Caledonia AIA Friday, but the lawmen were
counting three more points thanks to a 65th minute strike by veteran Alvin Boisson which left Jabloteh locked up
at the Hasely Crawford Stadium, Mucurapo.
National striker Arnold Dwarika struck a double to spur Public to a 2-0 shut out of Doc's Khelwalaas at
Concacaf Centre of Excellence, Macoya.
From the start of proceedings at the Stadium,
the men in blue looked more purposeful going forward than their
opponents who were without injured national striker Hector Sam. Tobagonian forward Rolston James and
Sherwin Gomez were never able to settle during the opening 45 minutes.
Midfielder Stephan David had Jabloteh's first
worthwhile attempt after 20 minutes when his left foot volley had
goalkeeper Raymond Hernandez saving low down.
Ten minutes before the half-time break, Police's Kerry Franklyn almost got the go ahead goal but 'keeper Ken
Francis did well to push his shot overbar.
At the start of the second half, Jabloteh's
Shawn David and skipper Dale Saunders went close to getting the
opening goal within the first 10 minutes. The lawmen responded by getting the eventual winner.
Following a scare at the back for Jabloteh
when Keith Pierre cleared Anthony Campbell's effort on the line,
Boisson was well positioned to hit home from the edge of the area to send the few loud Police supporters into a
Hernandez came up big for the "officers" in the 69th minute.
After Joseph Peters' attempt was blocked, David
followed up with a chip, forcing Hernandez to tip over. From
the resulting corner, Daleon Sinnette tested him from the edge of the box but there was no getting by the 'keeper
on the evening.
At Macoya, Joe Public rebounded from their
opening 2-0 loss to Jabloteh with victory by a similar scoreline over
the Central based Doc's.
After 13 minutes, midfielder Kerwyn "Hardest" Jemmot found Arnold Dwarika with a through ball and he shot
home for the lead despite appeals by the visitors for offside.
Dwarika then netted his second from a cross by Sherwyn Julien.
At Arima Municipal Stadium, the homesters went
ahead after eight minutes through Daryl Toussaint. Connection
had a goal by Brazilian Gefferson Goulart ruled out two minutes later when the referee ruled that his shot went
outside but camera replays showed that the ball did in fact go over the goal line but through an opening in the net.
The southerners were then forced to labour
hard for their three points, eventually snatching a 72nd minute
equaliser through skipper Reynold Carrington and St Lucian substitute Valencius Joseph got the winner four
minutes from full time.
Connection currently top the standings with
six points ahead of Police (six points) on goal difference, Caledonia
(three), Fire (three), Joe Public (three), Doc's (0) and cellar placed Army (0).
Round three games take place April 19.
ALL of Caroni was beaming with pride after
Professional Football League club Doc's Khelwalaas made local
The Central-based outfit became the first professional
club to open its own football stadium when the ribbon was
cut Wednesday afternoon to officially christen the Doc's Frederick Settlement Sporting Complex.
Unfortunately, the club did not properly live
up to the historic event as they lost their opening encounter 3-1 to
Police. But club CEO Shymdeo Gosein was still a very proud man afterwards.
"This (stadium opening) was a great occasion for us," he said.
"People from the community were walking up
to us all day and congratulating us on the facility. They were really
happy and you could feel the pulse of the people. The people are now feeling that Khelwalaas is part of them and
I see this going from strength and strength."
According to Gosein, an estimated 1,500 made
it to the ribbon-cutting ceremony which was carried out by
Minister of Sport and Youth Affairs Manohar Ramsaran, Fifa vice-president Jack Austin Warner, Dr
Chandrabhan Singh and Gosein, the managing director of the club's main sponsor, Doc's Engineering.
The facility, which was constructed on a seven-acre
portion of land leased to the club by Caroni Limited, is still
incomplete, though. Currently there is only a main stand and bleachers on either side of the playing field.
But Gosein said there were plans to construct
a gymnasium, food court, children's playing area and main parking
lot while more seating would also be installed.
The overall cost of the facility, he said,
would be just over $12 million. Some $3 million has been spent on
construction of the existing structure.
He said part of the reason for the huge turnout
was because members of the community had been used during the
construction of the facility, and it would also be maintained by home-town people.
This was also why he felt that while the club
failed to give the fans much to cheer about, save their consolation
goal form midfielder Marlon Minguel, there was such euphoria.
"Although the team lost you could here them
(community) chanting. They now have something which they have
never had before, something which has mushroomed out of nothing."
He added: "The players are also tremendously
happy because they now see themselves in an organisation that is
positive about the development of football. And we still have big plans for the sport."
Khelwalaas is now the only club to own its own ground as the other seven clubs in the PFL all rent facilities.
Defending champions Defence Force and CL Financial
San Juan Jabloteh share the Hasely Crawford Stadium
while Joe Public and Courts Caledonia AIA alternate at the João Havelange Centre of Excellence. Arima Fire
Service has the use of the Arima Municipal Stadium while Vibe CT 105 W Connection is playing at both
Guaracara and Industry Parks this season.
Speaking about this latest development yesterday,
PFL commissioner Colin Prevatt was also pleased.
"I was very impressed with the facility. It certainly has a lot of potential and I certainly want to congratulate Doc's
for all the hard work they have put in to make the facility a reality."
At the moment, the clubs participating in the
league are only required to have access to a ground to play their
home matches for the duration of the season.
Prevatt revealed, however, that Jabloteh and
WCFC were in the process of acquiring land on which to construct
such facilities in future.
"If the ground is not yours but within the community at least that is halfway there," he said.
"But with Khelwalaas constructing their facility
we're now reaching out into a new area of Trinidad and Tobago
which we've not been in before and this augers well for the League."
W Connection 3 v Army 0
Jabloteh 2 v Joe Public 0
Arima Fire 2 v Caledonia 1
Police 3 v Doc's 1
By Shaun Fuentes
Vibe CT 105 W Connection began their quest
for the 2000 Professional Football League crown with a 3-0
hammering of defending champions Defence Force at the Hasely Crawford Stadium, Mucurapo last night.
The victory was the biggest in the opening
round of action which also started on winning notes for CL Financial
San Juan Jabloteh, 2-0 over Joe Public; Arima Fire 2-1 against Courts Caledonia AIA; and Police 3-1 over
The reigning FA Trophy champions who had an
impressive entrance into the local scene last year blanked the
Army through three of their six starting Brazilians who combined for the goals: Jose Maria Manoel (12th and 31st
minutes) and Gefferson Goulart in the 74th.
The soldiers never found their rhythm in the first half and a couple judgmental errors by goalkeeper Hayden
Thomas put them in early problems.
After 12 minutes he was left picking up the
pieces following some slick work by Brazilian Fabiano Agripino on the
left before releasing Manoel who got around an advancing Thomas to slot into an unprotected goal.
A Dean Pacheco header wide of the right post was all the Army saw of the Connection goal inside the opening
The southerners doubled the advantage when
Thomas, under pressure from Manoel, fumbled a left side cross,
allowing the Brazilian to tap home from close range.
Connection captain Reynold Carrington could have increased the lead near the halftime interval when his shot
from close up was deflected out after Thomas got a hand to Manoel's low shot.
Goalkeeper Anthony Clarke had one scare before
the break when Jason Scotland's effort crashed off the upright.
The champions came back out desperate for a
goal and enjoyed the better of the exchanges for the first 20
minutes of the second half.
Pacheco steered an attempt inches wide of the right post from close range and Dennis Lawrence then began
celebrating after stabbing a rebound home, but referee Ramesh Ramdhan disallowed for offside.
Just as Connection began to settle again, they got the goal which put them out of the Army's reach.
A clearance by Clarke was flicked on and fell
nicely for Goulart inside the 18-yard-box, to place the ball away
from the advancing Thomas into the left corner.
Connection's St Lucian substitute Velencius Joseph was cautioned for hitting a ball into the goal after the whistle
went for offside.
At the Concacaf Centre of Excellence, Macoya,
1999 "Team of the Year" and PFL runners-up Joe Public
struggled to get their game intact against Jabloteh.
Stephan David put the San Juan side ahead with a left-footer past 'keeper Michael McComie. Dale Saunders then
gave them a 2-0 first half lead.
Michael McComie was forced to pull off the save of the match to a shot by David before the break.
At the new Doc's Frederick Settlement Sports
Complex, Caroni, Police got their goals from Dexter Cyrus (5th),
Alvin Boisson (55th) and Shawn David (88th) to cancel out Marlon Miguel's 63rd minute strike for the homeside.
Newcomers Arima Fire came from 1-0 down at the interval to defeat Caledonia at the Arima Municipal Stadium.
Devon Mitchell and Dale Simon (penalty) scored to cancel out Kendall Velox's first half goal for Caledonia.
Heavys clash on day one
By Shaun Fuentes
The heavyweights of local club football clash
today as the second season of the Professional League launches off
at four different venues.
Reigning champions Defence Force start their
quest for another $500,000 first prize against Vibe CT 105 W
Connection in a 6 pm affair at the Hasely Crawford Stadium, Mucurapo.
CL Financial San Juan Jabloteh, who placed fourth last season, face 1999 "Team of the Year" and PFL
runners-up Joe Public in the other top match of the day at the Concacaf Centre of Excellence, Macoya from 6
Newcomers Arima Fire and Courts Caledonia AIA
are at the Arima Municipal Stadium, also from 6 pm. Doc's
Khelwalaas square off against Police at their new stadium at Frederick Settlement, Caroni from four o'clock.
W Connection, second runners-up last time,
will be hoping to make an immediate impact with the nine Brazilian
players expected to be in their line-up today.
Coach Stuart Charles Fevrier will decide if
they all will be in his starting team, but returning captain Reynold
Carrington, as well as St Lucians Elijah Joseph, Jonathan McVane, Sheldon Mack and Francis Lastik, and local
striker Wesley Webb, are expected to see action.
The Army will not be intimidated by their opponents
even though they expect defence of the title to be tough.
National players Carlos Edwards, Dennis Lawrence and Ross Russell will hope to help the soldiers to a good
Midfielder Hutson Charles who announced his
retirement at the end of last season has hinted of a return and fans
will anticipate his appearance.
Joe Public's preparations have been somewhat inadequate since the appointment of Scotland-born Ian Porterfield
as national coach in March.
Kenny Joseph is now in charge of the "Eastern
Lions" but was only able to have one session Monday with the
club's national players, including Arnold Dwarika, Stokely Mason, Mickey Trotman, Derek King and Coulson
Midfielder Barry Swift and former Chester City
striker Kamu Laird also joined the Public camp earlier this week,
but Joseph has not yet decided on their services.
Public's opponents Jabloteh, fresh from launching an impressive corporate campaign, should not be taken lightly
and coach Ron La Forest, back from a recent stint with England's Wrexham, appears confident of a good
National striker Hector Sam, currently awaiting
word on his work permit appeal before joining Wrexham, is
expected to spearhead their attack. Rolston James, Joseph Peters, Stephan David and Marvin Faustin are also
likely to feature. National defender Shurland David will not be with them as his one-year contract has expired and
he's currently being eyed by English Second Division club AFC Bournemouth after turning down a deal with
At Caroni, Doc's Khelwalaas will officially
open their own ground with Sport and Youth Affairs Minister Manohar
Ramsaran and FIFA vice president Jack Warner in attendance.
Coach Ivan Persaud's team includes Barbados striker Roger Proverbs as well as Colombians Carlos
Carimchimbo, John Serva, Carlos Fory and Wilson Sanchez.
Fans can view Doc's opening game free of charge.
Former Joe Public coach Jamaal Shabaaz, now
in charge of Caledonia, will have the services of former Public
players, Vincentian Kendall Velox, goalkeeper Donovan Thomas and Rodney Stokes. Another Vincentian striker
Jean-Marie Emerson and St Lucian George Isaac are also in their side.
Jabloteh are currently negotiating with W Connection
for St Lucian striker Titus Elva.
Arima Fire (formerly Fire Services) will be hoping to get their first three points at the expense of Caledonia.
Referees for today:
Army v W Connection- Ramesh Ramdhan
Joe Public v Jabloteh - Austin Harewood
Doc's v Police - Lyndon Lara.
Caledonia v Arima Fire - Austin Perelion.
By Shaun Fuentes
CL Financial San Juan Jabloteh have gone the
extra mile to elevate themselves to the mantle as the most
professional and fashionable soccer team in the Caribbean.
They will off course hope their new embarkations
can spur them on to the Professional League's first prize of
$500,000 this season
The club, one of the giants in local football, launched their 2000 corporate season at the Hilton Trinidad
Among those present at yesterday's briefing
were FIFA vice president Austin Jack Warner; former German
soccer great Franz "The Kaiser" Beckenbauer; Jabloteh chairman Jerry Hospedales; commercial manager Peter
Miller and Carlos John, executive director of CL Financial and chairman of the Tourism and Industrial
Development Company (Tidco).
So impressed with Jabloteh's set up for 2000,
Joe Public chairman Warner told the gathering, "I make no
apologies for saying that one of the best organised clubs in the country is CL Financial Jabloteh. But this didn't
come easily. It took Jabloteh 25 years of sweat and tears to achieve this.
"Believe me they have left every other team
in this country about two or three years away."
Beckenbauer is in Trinidad for a presentation on behalf of Germany's 2006 World Cup bid.
He commended Jabloteh, adding that it was important
they took such initiatives if they were to be successful,
speaking from experience as president of German powerhouse Bayern Munich.
A motorcar, sponsored by Sigma Car Dealers, valued at $70,000 will be given to a yet to be selected Jabloteh
player based on his success during the season.
Jabloteh have obtained a deal with Inner Light
International which includes $25,000 worth of nutritional products
plus individual sponsorship of players Dale Saunders, Stephan David and Joseph Peters. They will also assist in
the rehabilitation of Don Morris following his tragic gun shooting incident last year.
From today, the club will also be selling their replica team jerseys manufactured by British Sportswear Company
Patrons purchasing a jersey, priced at $250
each, will have free entrance to all of Jabloteh's home games.
CL Financial have purchased $50,000 worth of jerseys to be distributed among youngsters of the San Juan
district and members of staff throughout the CL Financial Group of Companies.
Radical Designs will outfit the team for engagements
off the field and co-owner of the fashion house, Diane Hunte,
seemed excited yesterday as she mentioned it was the first time they were taking up such a venture.
In an attempt to attract a wider audience,
Jabloteh have also tied up a deal with Pelican Inn, Cascade, to take
care of their match day "limes" at Hasely Crawford Stadium, Mucurapo.
For their upcoming series of matches against English clubs titled "Britsoccer", United Kingdom-based Tyne Tees
Television will broadcast the PFL XI versus Newcastle United game live to an estimated audience of two million
in England. England's Channel 5 will also carry the West Ham vs PFL XI match to the London region.
List of matches against UK clubs arranged by
Joe Public vs Sheffield United at Centre of Excellence, Macoya, May 12.
Jabloteh vs Wrexham Centre of Excellence, May 19.
PFL XI vs Newcastle, Hasely Crawford Stadium, May 26.
Courts Caledonia vs AFC Bournemouth, Centre of Excellence, July 7.
PFL XI vs West Ham, Hasely Crawford Stadium, July 26.