Portmore aim to change fortunes against Harbour View
Nodley Wright, Gleaner Writer
Portmore United will this evening aim to get a firmer grip on the Red Stripe Premier League Trophy when they meet Harbour View at Ferdie Neita Park.
Sitting on 63 points with two games to go in the round and seven overall, there is still a mathematical chance that Portmore United could be caught by one of the rivals, and coach Calvin Lewis has made it clear that he will not get ahead of himself.
"It (the title) will not be wrapped up tomorrow. We can't go 18 points clear tomorrow if we win, and there will be another 18 points to play for after tomorrow's game. So thinking that we have it in the bag is not even on our minds," Lewis told The Gleaner.
While Lewis is confident that his team can do the job, he is also aware of the fact that in the matches between the two teams this season Harbour View have come out the better.
"We know that we have not beaten Harbour View all season, but we have to and will approach this game positively. Consistent with our approach we will have to get the three points as we are playing at home," Lewis added.
Portmore's chances will be boosted by the return to fitness of Alanzo Adlam, who missed Portmore's 3-2 win over Arnett Gardens on Sunday.
Harbour View's goals for the remainder of the season are not as lofty as Portmore's. Their's include earning a place in the top six, which would see them avoid the "indignity" of participating in the relegation scrap. In their previous game on Sunday, they drew 0-0 with bottom-of-the-table Village United, which could be a cause for concern.
However, Donovan Hayles, coach of Harbour View, is not worried.
"We do not have to pressure ourselves. Yes, we need to get into the top six and we are playing Portmore United, the leaders, but we don't have to go in with any fear. We have had good results against them this season," Hayles pointed out.
"On the two occasions we played we took four points off them, drawing the first away and winning the second at home," he reminded.
Harbour View's players, according to Hayles, are capable of getting themselves up for this match.
"Portmore are playing well now and are at home, but we will have to push them all the way and we have the capability to do so. We have been playing well and it is just that have we have not been getting the kind of results. Portmore could provide that motivation for us now," Hayles said.
Other crucial clashes include defending champions Tivoli Gardens against Humble Lion, Sporting Central versus Boys' Town and Village United against Waterhouse. Montego Bay United, who hold pole position in the teams battling for sixth place, could strengthen their hand with a win away to Highgate United.
8 p.m. Portmore United vs Harbour View FC at Ferdie Neita Park
3:30 p.m. Village United vs Waterhouse at Elliston Wakeland Centre
3:30 p.m. Sporting Central Academy vs Boys' Town at Brancourt
3:30 p.m. Humble Lion vs Tivoli Gardens at Effortville Community Centre
3:30 p.m. Highgate United vs Montego Bay United at Lynch Park
3:30 p.m. Reno vs Arnett Gardens at Frome Sports Complex