Where my Morvant Caledonia people at? United looking for boost in First Citizens Cup

Morvant Caledonia United starting line-up ahead of kick-off against San Juan Jabloteh on September 27, 2015 in Round One Match Day One of the Digicel Pro League 2015-16.

Saturday 17 October 2015

Two-time champions Morvant Caledonia United (MCU) have issued a rallying cry for home support, and not just for tomorrow’s (Sunday 18 October) First Citizens Cup 2015 quarter-finals clash with Defence Force from 4 pm on Sunday at the Hasely Crawford Stadium (HCS) in Port of Spain.

MCU coach Jerry Moe believes that while the HCS isn't situated within the communities of Morvant and Laventille, it's still relatively close to home.

“These are the same people who will go to the [HCS] for a Carnival fete,” Moe told www.ttproleague.com. “Obviously we can't bring the stadium to them because pleading to have a venue in our community upgraded (for professional play) seems never ending.”

Moe conceded that the club haven't been fulfilling the responsibility of connecting with the Morvant/Laventille communities but assured that new steps are in planning as part of the rebuilding process on and off the field of play.

“In the rebranding and rebuilding process it’s our responsibility to get connected with our communities,” the committed Moe said.

“We plan to begin charity work along with other social activities in the community from next week to try and form a bond with the people.”

A name change from Caledonia AIA and rebranded logo to better identify with Morvant-Caledonia, as well as a revamped squad for 2015-16, all under the leadership of club boss and technical director Jamaal Shabazz, MCU are focused on improvement on and off the field.

Last season's calendar saw MCU finish at an all-time low, second off the bottom in the Digicel Pro League (DPL) after once occupying third before the Christmas break.

The 2012 Caribbean Club champions and three-time FA Trophy winners (2008, 2011-12 & 2012-13) had an opportunity to redeem themselves in the final of the 2014-15 season-ending Digicel Pro Bowl, a title they won in 2008, but lost 4-1 to Central FC, the reigning Caribbean Club and DPL champions.

“The last couple years were rough in terms results," stated Moe. "As we all know results win matches and they weren’t going our way even though we were playing good football at times. In the league a bad couple of months in the second half of the season with bad results cost us.

“This season we have brought in some younger players, some of them from different Caribbean islands, and the plan is to try to guide them and mould them into playing in the Cale’ way and shape with the help of some of the remaining senior players. But also being more result oriented.

“We had an orientation with the new players showing them the history and what we had achieved for our community and as a club, not just in the Pro League. We want them to understand the demands playing for Cale’. It must not be just for football or the club, but also for the people they represent.

“We lost our opening game (2-1 to San Juan Jabloteh in the DPL on September 27) but we accepted it because we were aware that we had improvements to make. We have been working on correcting things in training and I believe we will get better.”

Despite being in a rebuilding stage, Moe isn’t dismissing MCU’s chances at this season’s First Citizens Cup.

He said, “It’s a trophy that’s there for us. We won it in the past. It carries $110,000 as the champions’ prize, so that’s 110 reasons why we should want to win it.”

This weekend’s quarter-final round action kicks off today (Saturday) at the Mahaica Oval in Point Fortin with St. Ann’s Rangers to tackle debutants Club Sando from 4 pm. Then from 6:30 pm Point Fortin Civic are against six-time champions W Connection with the quarter-finals day one culminating under the floodlit Mahaica Oval.

On Sunday, following the MCU versus another two-time former winners Defence Force clash, two-time reigning champions Central FC will meet Police FC from 6 pm at the Hasely Crawford Stadium in the final quarter-final matchup.

First Citizens Cup 2015
Quarter Final Round
Saturday 17 October 2015
Mahaica Oval, Point Fortin
St. Ann’s Rangers vs Club Sando—4 pm (QF 1)
W Connection vs Point Fortin Civic—6:30 pm (QF 2)

Sunday 18 October 2015
Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain
Morvant Caledonia United vs Defence Force—4 pm (QF 3)
Police FC vs Central FC—6 pm (QF 4)

Semi Final Round
Friday 23 October 2015
Winners QF 1 vs Winners QF 4
Winners QF 2 vs Winners QF 3

Final
Friday 30 October 2015

Qualifying Round results
Wednesday 30 September 2015 at the Hasely Crawford Stadium
San Juan Jabloteh 2 (Tyrone Charles 58’, Rickcardo Harriott 90’) vs Defence Force 3 (Glynn Franklyn 53’, 66’, Jerwyn Balthazar 80’)

North East Stars 1 (Keron Cummings 40’) vs Central FC 4 (Marvin Oliver 2’, Sean De Silva 18’, Willis Plaza 69’, 90’+2)