Wed | May 24, 2017

'We are ready for them'

Published:Thursday | May 7, 2015 | 5:00 AMLivingston Scott
Strickland (left) celebrates scoring a goal with teammate Alanzo Adlam in the Premier League this season.

Livingston Scott

Star writer

Arnett Gardens will go into the Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) semi-finals against first timers Humble Lion knowing that it has been 13 seasons since their community last stood at the pinnacle of local football, with the Premier League trophy held aloft.

The Jerome Waite-coached team was the hottest team through the preliminaries this season, with their wily veteran striker, Leon Strickland, the hottest striker in the league when the 'Junglists' went on a record 10-match unbeaten run.

They eventually went on to take the $1million prize for topping the league.

Strickland, who the Arnett faithfuls have grown to put their trust in this season, is warning his teammates against complacency.

"I hope we do not go into the (semi-final) game and say we won the league and get complacent, we want to go into the game like we finished fourth," he said.

"It is always a hard game against them (Humble Lion), but we are focused and we are ready for them."

The striker hit possibly the form of his life during the second round, taking his tally from two goals in the first round to seven, before adding three more before the preliminaries ended.

His goals have dried up recently. But that was not due to lack of form, as the striker picked up a series of knocks during his team's historic run and was only used sparingly by the coach during the third round.

Strickland now feels almost fully recovered and said he is ready again to take up the mantle.

good form

"The form is good, I am not really off form, just that I have been playing less because of injuries. I had about three injuries, so I was just cooling off and healing the injuries and now I am feeling less pain," he revealed.

"The last time we won it (Premier League) I was a part of it (team), but I did not play a major role, so now that I am playing a major role I want to bring it home," he stated.

The former St Jago High forward said his Arnett team is focused, hungry and preparing themselves for anything, and he expects a successful end to their season.

"The team is alright and right now they (players) are not making certain things pass. Recently in training the players rushed me because they said I wasn't tackling, so I think we are ready to go all the way to the final.

"Once our mind is right, everything will be alright. Once we don't go out and argue we always win and we want to keep it that way," he said.