Sun | Sep 24, 2017

'Great preseason main reason for Lion's good start'

Published:Friday | October 14, 2016 | 10:45 AMMarc Stamp
Humble Lion’s head coach Donovan Duckie.

Humble Lion FC's assistant coach, Lenworth Gordon, says his team's rise to the top in the Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) 2016-17 is as a result of a great pre-season programme.

The Clarendon-based Humble Lion are sole leaders on 12 points after five games ahead of Arnett Gardens and UWI FC - both on ten points, followed by newcomers Jamalco FC and reigning champions Montego Bay United (MBU) on nine points each in the top half of the 12-team RSPL table.

The RSPL leaders now have their sights set on winning the title for the first time in the club's history after a 2-1 win against MBU last Sunday.

"We had a great pre-season. I believe that's the reason why we are doing well now as we have a great squad," Gordon said during the RSPL weekly press conference at Red Stripe yesterday.

After losing to Portmore at the semi-final stage in the nation's top league last season, Humble Lion brought back Donovan Duckie as coach and added Gordon as his assistant in order to win the title.

"It is going to be different. The aim is to sell at least one player (abroad) and win the trophy. Donovan Duckie was brought back and I came in along with the addition of a few experienced players," the assistant coach disclosed.

"I am not surprised that the team is on top as we continue to train with high intensity. We want to be the top team at the end of the season," he added.

Humble Lion will next play against last year's beaten finalists Portmore United on Sunday at Juici Park in Clarendon, starting at 3 p.m.

The game is seen as a Clarendon derby as Portmore have relocated to the parish.

"We are focused and confident to play Portmore for the first time since the loss in the two-way semis. We consider this a derby game. It will be tough. However, our team spirit is high and we remain very confident," Gordon added.

Gordon said the addition of seasoned premier league players such as Gary McIntosh, Dwayne Holmes, Rafiek Thomas, Hughan Gray and the returning Devon Hodges has bolstered the squad.

"Personally, Donovan Duckie is one of the best coaches if not the best in Jamaica. As a young coach I would chose none other to learn from at this point. He is a professional and second to none," Gordon said about his boss Duckie.

"The support is also great from the chairman (Mike Henry) and the others. We plan to make Mr Henry proud by winning the title this season," Gordon also said.