Midway point: Central FC and W Connection confident of CONCACAF Champions League berths

Central FC players and staff celebrate after defeating Alpha United 3-1 at Providence Stadium in Guyana on 19 April to top Group 1 of the 2015 Caribbean Football Union (CFU) Club Championship.
Tuesday 21 April 2015

Despite having to face each other in the semi-final round of the 2015 Caribbean Football Union (CFU) Club Championship next month, current Digicel Pro League leaders Central FC and second-placed defending champions W Connection are both confident of securing berths at the 2015-2016 CONCACAF Champions League.

The semi-final and final stages of the Caribbean Club Championship will be contested on May 22 and 24 respectively, with Trinidad being the likely host nation having two Trinidadian clubs, Central and W Connection, qualifying for semi-final one. While semi-final two includes Jamaica’s Montego Bay United and Haiti’s Don Bosco FC in semi-final two.

Both semi-final winners will automatically qualify for the 2015-2016 CONCACAF Champions League, which begins in August, while the third-place winners will secure the third and final Caribbean berth. The semi-final winners will also lock horns on May 24 to decide the Caribbean champions.

“It’s a big incentive with three spots available for the CONCACAF Champions League,” said Central FC head coach Terry Fenwick, a familiar figure at CONCACAF given his former role at San Juan Jabloteh coach.

The former England and Tottenham defender continued, “We (Central FC) know a lot about (W) Connection and we are very confident in our own abilities and strengths. We’ve got nothing to fear in our first Caribbean tournament and it’s about attacking the game and getting the best result possible.”

Central (2-0-0, 6 points), debuting at the Caribbean Club Championship, topped Group 1, hosted in Guyana at Providence Stadium between April 15-19, by defeating Suriname powerhouse Inter Moengotapoe (0-0-2, 0 points) 2-0 and home team Alpha United (1-0-1, 3 points) 3-1.

While Connection topped Group 2, hosted simultaneously in Trinidad at the Ato Boldon Stadium, by flattening Guyana Defence Force 7-1 and Antigua and Barbuda’s SAP FC 7-2.
W Connection forward Hashim Arcia, left, celebrates with teammate Akeem Garcia during their team's 7-1 win over Guyana Defence Force on 15 April. Arcia scored 6 goals in Group 2, which Connection comfortably topped after whipping Antigua and Barbuda outfit SAP FC on 19 April.
“Naturally it was always our objective [to win the group] and we are very pleased with that,” said longstanding W Connection head coach Stuart Charles Fevrier, who led the “Savonetta Boys” to the Caribbean Club Championship crown in 2001, 2002 and 2009 and multiple qualifications into the CONCACAF tournament, with his most recent the 2013-2014 edition along with Pro League compatriot Caledonia.

Fevrier added, “The goal is to reach the CONCACAF Champions League. Reaching the semi-final stage (of the Caribbean Club Championship) is a step in the right direction but we wont be satisfied till we qualify for the Champions League.”

Commenting on his 22 May semi-final clash with Couva-rivals Central FC, Fevrier said, “It’s normal for me to accept whichever team we have to beat, because we want to be the champions of the Caribbean. And to be the champions of the Caribbean you must play some of the top teams from anywhere in the region, so [meeting] Central is not a problem.”

Tournament debutants, Montego Bay United (3-0-0, 9 points) topped Group 3, hosted in Haiti at the Complexe Sportif Des Cays. The Jamaica Red Stripe League champions defeated Guadeloupe’s Club Sportif Moulien 1-0, Haitian outfit America FC 4-1, and Suriname’s SV Excelsior 3-0.

While Haiti’s second stage League winners, Don Bosco FC (3-0-0, 9 points), hosts of Group 4 at the Stade Sylvio Cator, topped the group after wins against Lyford Cay of Bahamas 10-0, U.S. Virgin Islands’ Helenites Sporting Club 5-1, and Guadeloupe’s Unite Sainte Rose 2-1.

With the Caribbean Club Championship semi-final and final a month away, Central FC and W Connection will shift their focus back on the high priority Digicel Pro League championship.

Central, six points clear at the top of the standings with 49 points and two matches remaining, must first face Point Fortin Civic from 8 pm on Friday 24 April at the Hasely Crawford Stadium following a 6 pm kickoff between North East Stars and St. Ann’s Rangers in Round Three Match Day Eight.

The “Couva Sharks”, winners of this season’s First Citizens Cup and Rawle Fletcher (DPL Round One) and Akeem Adams (DPL Round Two) under previous coach Zoran Vranes, who was replaced by Fenwick last month, will then wrap up their 2014-2015 championship campaign against North East Stars on Tuesday 28 April from 8 pm at the Ato Boldon Stadium in a rescheduled Round Three Match Day Seven fixture.

While Connection, with 43 points and three matches remaining, must do the necessary to keep alive their chances of hurdling Central to retain the title.

Connection will host Caledonia AIA from 4 pm on Friday 24 April, followed by Tuesday’s rescheduled match against Police FC from 6 pm, before wrapping up their campaign against San Juan Jabloteh in Round Three Match Day Nine.

Jabloteh will be in action on Sunday 26 Aprilagainst Defence Force from 4 pm at the Larry Gomes Stadium in their Round Three Match Day Eight fixture.

Caribbean Football Union (CFU) Club Championship 2015 / CONCACAF Champions League 2015-2016 qualifying

 
GROUP STAGE RESULTS

GROUP 1 (GUYANA)

Providence StadiuM

April 15, 2015

Alpha United (GUY)  3 vs Inter Moengotapoe (SUR) 0


April 17, 2015

Inter Moengotapoe (SUR) 0 vs Central FC (T&T) 2 (Willis Plaza 53’, 57’)


April 19, 2015

Alpha United 1 (Konata Mannings 43') vs Central FC 3 (Ataulla Guerra 15', 85' penalty, Sean de Silva 17’)


Group 1
 standings


Team                            P   W   D   L    GF    GA    GD    Points

1. Central FC                2    2     0    0     5        1        4        6

2. Alpha United            2    1     0    1     4        3        1        3

3. Inter Moengotapoe   2     0    0    2     0        5       -5        0


GROUP 2 (TRINIDAD)

Ato Boldon Stadium

April 15, 2015


W Connection (T&T) 7 (Akeem Garcia 18', Shahdon Winchester 20', Shahdon Winchester 25, Hashim Arcia 32', 46', 82’, Jerrel Britto 40') vs Guyana Defence Force (GUY) 1 (Delroy Fraser 90’+4)


April 17, 2015
SAP FC (ATG) 2 vs Guyana Defence Force (GUY) 2


April 19, 2015

W Connection 7 (Jomal Williams 5', Jerrel Britto 9', 45-37 Hashim Arcia 20', 43', 45', Shahdon Winchester 26') vs SAP FC 2(Tevaughn Harriette 58', Steven Roberts 78')


Group 2
 standings

Team                        P   W   D   L    GF    GA    GD    Points

1. W Connection      2    2    0    0     14       3      11       6

2. SAP FC                2    0   1    1       4       9       -5        1

3. Guyana D/Force   2    0   1    1       3       9       -6        1


GROUP 3 (HAITI)

Complexe Sportif Des Cays

April 15, 2015

Montego Bay United (JAM) 1 vs Club Sportif Moulien (GLP) 0

America FC (HAI) 4 vs SV Excelsior (SUR) 2




April 17, 2015

Club Sportif Moulien (GLP) 3 vs SV Excelsior (SUR) 2

America FC (HAI) 1 vs Montego Bay United (JAM) 4


April 19, 2015

SV Excelsior (SUR) 0 vs Montego Bay United (JAM) 3

America FC (HAI) 2 vs Club Sportif Moulien (GLP) 1

 
Group 3 standings

Team                               P   W   D   L    GF    GA    GD    Points

1. Montego Bay United  3    3    0    0      8       1        7         9

2. America FC                3    2    0    1      7       7        0         6

3. Club Sportif Moulien 3    1    0    2      4       5        1-        3

4. SV Excelsior              3     0    0    3     4      10       -6        0

 
GROUP 4 (HAITI)

Stade Sylvio Cator

April 15, 2015

Helenites Sporting Club (VIR) 2 vs Unite Sainte Rose (GLP) 2

Don Bosco FC (HAI) 10 vs Lyford Cay FC (BAH) 0

 
April 17, 2015

Unite Sainte Rose (GLP) 2 vs Lyford Cay FC (BAH) 2

Don Bosco FC (HAI) 5 vs Helenites Sporting Club (VIR) 1

 
April 19, 2015

Lyford Cay FC (BAH) 1 vs Helenites Sporting Club (VIR) 0

Don Bosco FC (HAI) 2 vs Unite Sainte Rose (GLP) 1

 
Group 4 standings

Team                               P   W   D   L    GF    GA    GD    Points

1. Don Bosco FC             3    3    0    0     17       2       15         9

2. Lyford Cay FC            3    1    1   1      2       12      -10        4

3. Unite Sainte Rosienne 3    0   2    1       5       6       -1          2

4. Helenites SC                3    0   1    2       3      8        -5         1

 

Semi Final Round

May 22

Semi Final 1

Central FC (Winner Group 1) vs W Connection (Winner Group 2)

Semi Final 2

Montego Bay United (Winner Group 3) vs Don Bosco FC (Winner Group 4)

 

Final

May 24

Winner SF 1 vs Winner SF 2 (championship match)

Loser SF 1 vs Loser SF 2 (third place playoff)