St Georges aim to make home advantage count
With firm ambitions of a Premier League return, St Georges Sports Club of Portland will be looking to make home advantage count by securing a big lead against St Mary's Albion Mountain when they clash in the Magnum Eastern Confederation Super League first-leg semi-final at Lynch Park, Buff Bay, beginning at 3 p.m. today.
"It is so crucial for this game, the first-leg semi-final. It's at my home. I want to leave this first semi-final here with at least a 3-0 advantage," said Marlon Russell, coach of St Georges.
St Georges topped Group One of the preliminaries with 15 points and a plus-four goal difference, nicking St Ann's Priory Academy, which also netted 15 points but had a negative three-goal differential. Albion Mountain finished second in Group Two with 15 points, seven behind runaway winners Mount Pleasant (22 points).
Albion Mountain's coach, Lincoln Small, believes that his team has the best chance among the top four of winning the whole thing.
Small said: "I think we have the greatest chance over the other teams. We've been there already, but we've been unlucky as things worked in their favour. We played Mount Pleasant with nine players for 95 per cent of the game and drew the game. In terms of Priory Academy, we played them twice and the games were drawn."
Albion Mountain hosted St Georges in a cross-zone meeting this season, which ended 2-2. That result is fuelling the optimism of Russell, whose main players all have Premier League experience.
"I am pretty confident because when I played this team at their home, one of my main strikers wasn't involved and I was without a potential midfielder," he said. "We're 100 per cent fit now. All our players are up and ready."