D/Force dent Central DPL title hopes

Schultz double earn Cale’ full points against Rangers

Defence Force winger Akeem Roach (R), pictured with W Connection fullback Alvin Jones, scored his team's equalising goal in a 1-1 draw with Central FC on March 21, 2015.

Saturday 21 March 2015

Digicel Pro League leaders Central FC were held to a 1-1 draw by Defence Force on Saturday, a result that dented the “Couva Sharks” title hopes.

Central (14-4-3, 46 points), with three matches remaining (against San Juan Jabloteh, North East Stars and Point Fortin Civic) in the championship, now stands just three points ahead of reigning champions and second-placed DIRECTV W Connection (13-4-3, 43 points), who have four remaining matches (against Defence Force, Police, Caledonia and Jabloteh).

Central went ahead in the 14th minute at the Mannie Ramjohn Stadium after midfielder Sean de Silva beat Defence Force goalkeeper Sheldon Clarke in a one-on-one after latching onto a deflected Ataulla Guerra pass inside the box.

But that lead was cancelled out five minutes later when Defence Force winger Akeem Roach slotted past Central goalkeeper Jan-Michael Williams from a tight angle for a 1-1 score.

Williams was called into action in the 22nd minute, as Defence Force proved a formidable bunch from early on, but the Trinidad and Tobago ‘keeper comfortably held on to forward Devorn Jorsling’s free kick.

Jorsling, who leads the DPL 2014-2015 scorers’ list with 14 goals, one of which he scored against Central for a 1-0 Defence Force win in Round Two, then picked out Roach at the top of the box but the promising winger blasted over bar.

Central, who defeated the army/coastguard combination 2-1 in Round One, also had further chances to find the back of the net but failed to beat Clarke, and even when they did, the post got in the way.

Four minutes before the break Guerra, Willis Plaza and De Silva failed to benefit from a low dangerous ball played across the area by full-back Kaydion Garbiel.

Then in the 56th minute Clarke didn’t just enough to steer a low strike from Central’s Liberian midfielder Borfor Carr over bar. And from the resulting short corner, De Silva’s crack from the left rattled the far upright.

Clarke later produced, surely, one of the top saves for the season in the 75th minute at full stretch to put behind a 30-yard Guerra free-kick that was destined for the upper corner.

Defence Force (9-3-8, 30 points), who leapfrogged Point Fortin Civic (9-3-8, 30 points) for fourth position only by a marginally better goal-difference with the result, had the last effort but midfielder Jerwyn Balthazar fired just wide of the upright from the top of the box following a right side counterattack by coach Marvin Gordon’s soldiers.

Also on Saturday, on the bottom end of the ladder, eight-placed Caledonia AIA (6-4-10, 22 points) snapped a three-match losing streak in the DPL with a 2-1 win over cellar-placed St.Ann’s Rangers (0-1-20, 1 point) at the Larry Gomes Stadium.

Guyana forward Purnell Schultz scored twice in the second half, netting in the 71st and 80th minutes for his 10th and 11th DPL goals this season to put Caledonia in front before Sayid Freitas pulled back a goal in the 88th minute for Rangers, who recorded their 20th loss in 21 league matches this season.

Digicel Pro League 2014-2015

Round Three Match Day Five results

Friday 20 March 2015

Hasely Crawford Stadium

Police FC 1 (Micah Lewis 24') vs North East Stars 1 (Keron Cummings 80' penalty)

W Connection 2 (Hashim Arcia 41', Jomol Williams 52') vs Point Fortin Civic 0

 

Saturday 21 March 2015

Mannie Ramjohn Stadium

Central FC 1 (Sean de Silva 14') vs Defence Force 1 (Akeem Roach 19')

 

Larry Gomes Stadium

St. Ann's Rangers 1 (Sayid Freitas 88') vs Caledonia AIA 2 (Purnell Schultz 71', 80')

 

Central FC: 5.Akeem Benjamin, 45.Ataulla Guerra, 21.Jan-Michael Williams (GK), 12.Jamal Jack, 15.Kaydion Gabriel, 29.Upston Edwards, 8.Sean de Silva, 33.Willis Plaza, 2.Elton John, 24.Kevon Villaroel (4.Uriah Bentick 71st minute), 6.Leston Paul (28.Borfor Carr 46th minute)
 
Unused substitutes: 14.Jean-Luc Rochford, 1.Javon Sample (GK), 26.Michael Yaw Darko, 11.Darren Mitchell
 
Coach: Zoran Vranes
 
Defence Force: 2.Glynn Franklyn, 4.Dave Long, 8.Curtis Gonzales, 9.Devorn Jorsling, 11.Akeem Roach (26.Richard Roy 79th minute), 13.Marvin Jones (12.Jemel Sebro 77th minute), 17.Ross Russell Jr., 22.Jamali Garcia, 23.Kerry Joseph (10.Josimar Belgrave 60th minute), 25.Sheldon Clarke (GK), 99.Jerwyn Balthazar
 
Unused substitutes: 18.Sean Narcis, 21.Aklie Edwards, 28.Andre Marchan (GK), 90.Jerwyn Balthazar
 
Coach: Marvin Gordon
 
Match Referee: Cecile Hinds