Marvin Morgan's bittersweet moment
Nodley Wright, Gleaner Writer
Another teammate was supposed to highlight Sunday's Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) clash between last season's runners-up Waterhouse and steady Boys' Town, but Marvin Morgan stole the show as Waterhouse won 2-0.
The little livewire not only upstaged Jamaica's latest football 'hero', Jermaine 'Tuffy' Anderson, who found himself shackled by the Boys' Town defence and, especially Carlos Wright, he also scored the opening goal against his former team, then got himself ejected.
That performance, and the ensuing events, left Morgan - who made the move from Boys' Town just before the transfer window slammed shut - close to tears.
"It was an overwhelming feeling, playing against my former team, and to be the one to score the opening goal was really special. It was unfortunate (that I had to score against them), but I am just doing my job," said Morgan, betraying the special feeling he still has for his home club.
After picking up a pass from a teammate on the left, just outside the 18-yard box, Morgan shuffled to his right, evading two challenges before directing a right-footer on goal in the 79th minute. Kirk Porter should have done better.
His former teammate was unconcerned about that as he raced in the direction of the stands, peeled off his shirt and beat his chest in celebration.
That was followed shortly after by a low as referee Courtney Campbell, despite the pleadings of Anderson for leniency, brandished the second yellow card and a dejected Morgan made his early exit.
"I didn't even remember that I was on a yellow card. The first yellow card was so silly, I really did not remember, and I was so excited I got caught up in the moment," Morgan said, explaining the second yellow card and his ejection.
"I felt disappointed that I let my team down, even though I did not remember that I was on a card. I was very angry with myself."
Standing at the clubhouse close to tears, Morgan's mood was improved when substitute Romario Campbell, another new signee, broke away from the Boys' Town back line and lobbed the advancing Porter to make it 2-0 in the 90th minute. He then relaxed and managed to raise something close to a smile.
It was the second successive year that Morgan was scoring on the opening day of the season. He did the same against Montego Bay United to give Boys' Town a 1-1 draw.
Ironically, that goal and the point were later scratched, as Morgan was ruled ineligible at the time he played.
In search of opportunity
Still a lover of Boys' Town, Morgan said leaving was a decision taken in consultation with his family.
"It was a really hard decision and one I made after talking with my family.
"Boys' Town is my family club. My grandfather played cricket and football for the club and my father played football, but they have no problem with the move. They approved it," explained the young man, who starred for St George's College before making the move to full-time club football three years ago.
Opportunity, he said, was what forced his hand.
"I left Boys' Town for better opportunity and stability, and the support you get in every way at Waterhouse. I had to do what I had to do for my family. There was no conflict between me and anyone at Boys' Town. It is just that I felt I had to make a move to make things happen," he explained.
People in the community, he said, were disappointed with his decision to leave, but understand.
A number of his former teammates, it appears, share a similar view to the people in the community, as they exchanged pleasantries with him after the game in which he upstaged teammate 'Tuffy' to steal the spotlight in bittersweet fashion.
August Town's Rupert Murray (left) goes for a header with Rivoli's Devon Hodges during their Red Stripe Premier League football match at UWI Bowl, Mona, on Sunday. The game ended 1-1.