Powell: We are going to do it annually
Adrian Frater, News Editor
Western Bureau:Last weekend's inaugural Goodwill Football Tour, which saw Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) outfits Cavalier SC, Montego Bay United FC (MBUFC), Waterhouse FC and Sporting Central Academy FC playing three rounds of exhibition games in St Elizabeth and St Ann, is being hailed as a major success.
"We met our primary objective, which was to take top-flight football to the parishes of St Elizabeth and St Ann," said Orville Powell, the CEO of MBUFC ... "Secondly, it was always a way of creating preseason practice matches ahead of the 2013-14 RSPL season and that, too, was achieved."
After the three rounds of matches, which saw the teams playing at the St Elizabeth Technical High School (STETHS) grounds and BREDs Treasure Beach Sports Complex in St Elizabeth and Drax Hall in St Ann, Cavalier emerged champions on goal difference over Sporting Central.
On the opening day of the tour which featured a double-header at the STETHS ground last Friday afternoon, Sporting Central turned in a decent performance to clip MBUFC 2-1 in the curtain-raiser while in the feature game, Cavalier blocked fellow KSAFA outfit Waterhouse 3-0.
At the second round of matches on Saturday at BREDS Treasure Beach Sports Complex, there was a lot of exciting football but unfortunately for the fans, there were no goals. MBUFC and Cavalier drew 0-0 in the opening game while Sporting Central and Waterhouse also ended 0-0 in the feature game.
Going into the final day at Drax Hall on Sunday, all four teams had a chance of taking home the Goodwill Trophy as Cavalier and Sporting Central were locked atop the standings on four points while MBUFC and Waterhouse came next on a point each.
In their game, Cavalier and Sporting Central battled to an entertaining 0-0 draw which saw both teams ending on five points. However, by virtue of their superior goal difference, Cavalier took home the championship trophy.
In the second game, MBUFC secured third place after registering an impressive 3-0 win over Waterhouse who played much better than the final result suggested.
"We got pretty good support at all three venues as the fans came out to enjoy the novelty of having RSPL style in their backyard," said Powell. "I rather suspect that had we spend more time on advertising, the tournament would be an overwhelming success."
In fact, Cavalier's Rudolph Speid, Powell and Ainsley Lowe' who organised the competition with the blessing of the Premier League Players Association, the Jamaica Football Federation, the St Elizabeth Football Association, and the St Ann Football Association, hope to make the Goodwill Tour an annual affair.
"There is a lot of value in a tournament like this, and we definitely want to make it an annual affair," said Powell. "If we want the game to grow locally we need to take top-flight football to all parts of Jamaica.