Oliver: It’s time Central take home the FA Trophy

FA Trophy Round of 32 to be contested on Sunday

Central FC star Marvin Oliver, right, controls the ball ahead of North East Stars midfielder Kennedy Hinkson during the 2014 First Citizens Cup Final.
Friday 20 February 2015

Central FC standout Marvin Oliver says it’s about time the “Couva Sharks” lift the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) FA Trophy after two consecutive runners-up finishes.

“It’s time we win the FA Trophy,” said the 39-year-old Central FC star. “After being in the last two Finals and finishing on the wrong end I think it’s time we take the FA Trophy. We have the capacity and the edge to push harder and capture the crown.”

Central, leaders of the current Digicel Pro League 2014-2015 championship and last season’s runners-up, will face Eastern Counties Football Union (ECFU) outfit Rio Claro United from 4 pm at the Ato Boldon Stadium when the 2015 Round of 32 FA Trophy main draw unfolds on Sunday 22 February.

Central were defeated FA Trophy finalists in 2012-2013 (2-0 against Caledonia AIA) and 2013-2014 (6-5 on penalties following a 2-2 draw against DIRECTV W Connection).

Meanwhile Connection, the reigning Pro League champions and four-time FA Trophy champions (1999, 2000, 2002 and 2013-2014), will meet 2006 winners WASA FC from 3:30 pm at the WASA Ground in St. Joseph.

Connection, a seven-time FA Trophy finalists and defending champions, booked their place in the main draw after eking out a 1-0 preliminary round over Super League outfit Real Maracas on January 28, and will now try to avenge a 4-3 penalty defeat following a 1-1 draw against WASA in the preliminary round of the Toyota Classic last November.

Oliver – a FA Trophy winner with former club San Juan Jabloteh in 2010-2011 – cautioned, “The FA Cup will always be one of those strange Cups. There is no easy ride for any team. This is the tournament of the ‘giant killers’ anywhere in the world. The pool of players in Trinidad and Tobago isn’t that big. The top teams in the Super League have a number of players who have played in the Pro League. They know what it is like to play in the Pro League and they will have the desire to better the bigger teams.”

Fellow Pro League clubs, North East Stars, Defence Force, Jabloteh, Point Fortin Civic, Police FC, Caledonia AIA and St. Ann’s Rangers will all be in action on Sunday, amidst the hectic DPL calendar.

North East Stars, winners in 2003, will visit Central Football Association (CFA) outfit Enterprise Life Sport from 5 pm at the Enterprise Recreation Ground.

Defence Force, champions in 1974, 1981, 1985, 1989, 1991 and 1996, and coming off a 7-1 mauling of Queen’s Park Cricket Club FC in the preliminary stage, will battle its Super League Defence Force counterpart from 6:15 pm at the Marvin Lee Stadium.

Jabloteh, winners in 1998, 2005 and 2010-2011, will travel to the Biche Recreation Ground from 4:30 pm against home side Biche United of the Eastern Counties Football Union (ECFU).

Point Fortin Civic will host Super League outfit Petrotrin Palo Seco 3:30 pm at the Mahaica Oval; Police will host Tobago Football Association (TFA) outfit Youth Stars from 6 pm at the Police Training Ground in Long Circular; while Caledonia, winners in 2008, 2011-2012 and 2012-2013, will host Eastern Football Association (EFA) outfit Prison FC from 6 pm at the Maracas Recreation Ground in St. Joseph.

St Ann’s Rangers, meanwhile, will face a difficult test against Super League outfit Guaya United from 3:30 pm at Guaya High School Ground.

Full FA Trophy Round of 32 Fixtures
Sunday 22 February 2015
Mahaica Oval
Point Fortin Civic vs Petrotrin Palo Seco—3.30pm

WASA Ground, St Joseph
WASA FC vs W Connection—3.30pm

Guaya High School Ground
Guaya United vs St Ann’s Rangers—3.30pm

Black Rock Recreation Ground
Black Rock FC vs Moruga FC—3.30pm

Marvin Lee Stadium
FC Santa Rosa vs Club Sando—3.30pm
Defence Force (Pro League) vs Defence Force (Super League)—6.15pm

Ato Boldon Stadium
Central FC vs Rio Claro United—4pm

Plymouth Recreation Ground
D Lime Bar Goal City vs Bethel United—4.15pm

Biche Recreation Ground
Biche United vs San Juan Jabloteh—4.30pm

D’Marie Hill Recreation Ground, Sangre Grande
Tamana FC vs St Francois Nationals—4.30pm

Enterprise Recreation Ground
Enterprise Life Sport vs North East Stars—5pm

Cyd Gray Recreation Ground, Roxborough
Roxborough Lakers vs Cunupia FC—5.30pm

Dibe Recreation Ground, Long Circular
Maple FC vs SKHY FC—6pm

Police Training Ground, Long Circular
Police FC vs Youth Stars—6pm

Maracas Recreation Ground, St. Joseph
Caledonia AIA vs Prison FC—6 pm

Plymouth Recreation Ground
StokelyVale FC vs Penal All Stars—6.15pm

Preliminary Round results
Wednesday 28 January 2015
Fyzabad Recreation Ground
Siparia Spurs 2 (Andy London 76’, Jesse Edwards 85’) vs Maple FC 2 (Shaquille Hazel 32’, Matthew Waldron 36’)
Maple FC won 3-2 on kicks from the penalty mark

Constantine Ground, Macoya
House of Dread 1 (Akiel Benjamin 90’) vs Guaya United 3 (Sherlan Campbell 20’, Ryan Stewart 26’, Jody Allsop 66’)

Dibe Recreation Ground, Long Circular
QPCC 1 (Jerome Charles 58’) vs Defence Force (Pro League) 7 (Chad De Freitas 25’ (own goal), Akeem Roach 63’, Richard Roy 68’, 72’, 84’, Josimar Belgrave 80’, 87’)

Edingburgh 500, Chaguanas
Cedar Hill United 0 vs Defence Force (Super League) 3 (Akiel Morris 10’, Aaron Lester 63’, Keston Williams 88’)

Ato Boldon Stadium
W Connection 1 (Christian Rodriguez 89') vs Real Maracas 0