Village gearing for Premier League return
Paul Clarke, Gleaner Writer
Village United, Trelawny's most successive football club, is on a drive to return to the highs they once attained in the Premier League.
They have started life in the Super League on a decent enough note to impress member of parliament for North Trelawny, Patrick Atkinson.
The MP made a donation of football boots, jerseys and nutrition products to the club recently, with a commitment of assistance, which to the club's general manager Dean Innis, was like music to the ear.
"That donation came at the right time and I am certain it will play a vital role in this club's drive to return to top-flight football," said Innis. "It was like music to my ear.
"Mr Atkinson has committed to helping this club move forward with the single aim of getting back to the Premier League and to successfully stay there. We can only oblige by doing our best on and off the field for our supporters and for the trust that the MP has in us."
Village United currently play in the Western Confederation Super League and have been having a good season so far with only two defeats. But their general manager believes that his club has more to offer, starting with the cadre of young players at the coach's disposal and their hunger to return to the Premier League.
Their most successful campaign in 10 years in the Premier League was in the 2002-03 season when they ended as beaten semi-finalists to Tivoli Gardens FC and again in 2003-04, when they were beaten again at the semi-final stage by Portmore United. Since then, they have had to battle relegation almost on a seasonal basis. But with a new emphasis on its management structure and the personal interests shown by Atkinson, it would seem they may yet have achieved glory.
FILLING THE VOID
Their demotion last season has definitely left a void, which Innis is keen on filling with the assistance of the member of parliament.
"We are currently on solid footing and earnestly pulling out all the stops to get back to the Premier League next season. It is in this light that the donation from Mr Atkinson is a worthwhile one.
"These (gear) that he has contributed are not for individual players, moreso for the club. He has invested in Village United the football club, so it's us the players and coaches and managers who must now perform that he and other great supporters of this club gets maximum returns," noted Innis.
So after a promising start in the Super League, Village, with fresh injection of belief and purpose, are now eyeing the semi-final stage. This, according to Innis, will require the club amassing as many points as possible.
"This is the hurdle in front of us now; getting as much points from here on end is what we are all about. We are not only rebuilding; we are retooling and refocusing on what it will take to get us back to the Premier League.