ACE DEFENCE Force forward and 2012-2013 Digicel Pro League top goal-scorer Devorn Jorsling believes that his team’s existing squad can dominate local football for the next few seasons.
“We’ve been together for a (number) of years and I think we have matured well in the League, and we have an experienced bunch of players,” said Jorsling who topped the League scorers’ list with 20 goals.
“I believe if it was not for the (State Of Emergency in 2011) Defence Force would have won the League last season. I think this squad has two … three years in it, because the average ages of the players are 28 and we have some youngsters coming through. So I say we can dominate local football for the next two … three years.”
On May 10, Defence Force ended a successful League campaign with a 4-0 win over cellar-placed TTEC FC at the Marvin Lee Stadium, Macoya and celebrated the title that already had the name Defence Force etched on it five days before. Defence Force, 46 points at the top with 14 wins, four draws and just three defeats, were closely followed by Caledonia AIA in second.
The Morvant/Laventille club finished with 42 points from 13 wins, three draws and five defeats, while last season’s winners (DIRECTV) W Connection finished third with 38 points, just as fourth-placed North East Stars, but ahead by a better goal difference.
“It really feels great because every game, week in, week out … ninety minutes, it was hard fight,” explained Defence Force team captain and right-back, Corey Rivers, who was rested against TTEC, in their final League contest. It feels really great to now lift the trophy at the end of the season, and that was one of our aims from the beginning — go at the League Championship.”
Rivers added that the Army-Coast Guard combination took each game, one at a time and gave it all that they had. It was the second League title clinched by the Army in the last three seasons.
In 2010-2011 Defence Force lifted the title and Jorsling led the season scoring and was later named Toyota/TT Pro League Player of the Year. Jorsling immediately moved on to join USL Pro club Orlando City on a one year deal and was part of the team’s League success.
But back at home the soldiers didn’t go on to defend the title in 2011-2012. A Trinidad and Tobago Government issued State of Emergency in 2011 between September and December resulted in the soldiers entering the season late and without preparation.
Jorsling returned to Trinidad, around the time Defence Force looked set to start its 2011-2012 campaign, but opted to join home-town club Caledonia on a short term deal to complete his two-year sabbatical from the Army. Jorsling enjoyed Cup successes at the Morvant-Laventille club, but it was Defence Force teammate Richard Roy that was named Toyota/TT Pro League Player of the Year in that season.
Only recently Jorsling and Roy were rewarded a new Toyota Yaris each for their Player of the Year accomplishments in the previous two seasons. And, two Fridays ago, Jorsling’s emotions were quite different from his teammates after celebrating the League title a second time.
“This (2012-2013) title was even sweeter than the first one (2010-2011),” shared Jorsling. “…coming back into the team from playing with Caledonia last season, I said, I had to win this title to regain the trust of my teammates.
“And I think I did that. At the beginning of the season it was a bit shaky, but we settled down. I think I’ve won back the trust of the guys and we gelled as a team, now this is the end product.
“It’s a great feeling … look I’m getting goose bumps,” he showed, “…because to leave the Defence force and come back to win the league … have a good input in the team and scoring the most goals in the League.”