Kareem ‘Scooby’ Freitas scored a goal in each half as Police FC dented the hopes of Terminix La Horquetta Rangers qualifying as one of three T&T Premier Football League clubs’ for this year’s CONCACAF Caribbean Club Shield and the CONCACAF Caribbean Cup competitions with a 5-2 victory at the Phase II La Horquetta Recreation Ground, La Horquetta on Monday night.
Going into the rescheduled Match Day One clash, Rangers were in fourth spot on the 12-team standings with 34 points from 15 matches, six adrift of the third placed Defence Force with two rounds of matches left to play before the May 28 deadline given to the T&T Football Association by CONCACAF to select the three local clubs to compete in the CONCACAF tournaments. Two teams to contest the Caribbean Club Shield and one to challenge for Caribbean Cup honours.
However, the Lawmen, who have endured a very inconsistent campaign thus far which resulted in coach Richard Hood losing his job had other ideas and were happy to play spoilers as visitors, thus handing their rivals Defence Force the upper hand in the race for the top three finish, with a win of their own on the night.
In the 29th minute, the Lawmen, now under the charge of interim-coach Wendell Joseph were the first to get on the scoresheet, through De Freitas in the 29th minute.
But the visitors’ lead was short-lived as Rangers drew level within two minutes thanks to Isaiah Lee, and seven minutes later, Kadeem Corbin fired the host ahead.
But Rangers’ good vibes soon turned sour as central defender Jevon Morris was then given his marching orders for a reckless challenge leaving his team to play the second half with ten men.
Within five minutes of the restart, Police made its man advantage count as Jabari Mitchell quickly tied up the scores at 2-2 and two minutes later, his team regained the lead at 3-2 via Kadeem Hutchinson, before De Freitas put the results beyond doubt with his team’s fourth, and his second on the night in the 62nd. Veteran midfielder Josimar Belgrave, aformer standout with Defence Force capped off the stellar display with a fifth item on the stroke of full-time.
With the win, Police moved ahead of Central FC on goal difference into fifth spot with 25 points from 16 matches, but more importantly and disastrously it further dented the chances of Rangers objectives to secure a top-three finish by the end of Round 18 as they remained on 34 points, from 16 matches, six behind third-placed Defence Force (40), while AC Port-of-Spain leads the table with 42 points, and is certain of qualification spot along with the second-placed Tiger Tanks Club Sando.
Tomorrow, the league will continue with a full slate of matches with Defence Force travelling to the Mannie Ramjohn Stadium, Marabella for a clash with Club Sando from 4 pm, with the visitors needing a point to be certain of cementing a top three spot by Sunday, and with title ambitions on both team’s agenda as well with six rounds of matches left to play.
Police FC 5 (Kareem Freitas 29th, 62nd, Jabari Mitchell 50th, Kadeem Hutchinson 52nd, Josimar Belgrave 90th) vs La Horquetta Rangers 2 (Isaiah Lee 31st, Kadeem Corbin 39th)
Club Sando 2 (Alvin Jones 8th, 67th) vs W Connection 1 (Nathan Quashie 38th)
Point Fortin Civic 3 (Marcus Joseph 51st, Tyrel Emmanuel 75th, Shackiel Henry 85th) vs San Juan Jabloteh 2 (Jadel-Josiah Carter 41st, Kevon Woodley 58th)
AC PoS 5 (Radanfah Abu Bakr 18th, Sedale Mc Lean 32nd, Duane Muckette 72nd, Jomoul Francois 75th, Che Benny 90+2) vs Morvant Caledonia AIA (Joshua Alexander 40th)
Police FC 2 (Jabari Mitchell 81st, Kareem Freitas 89th) vs Cunupia FC 1 (Germain Hughes 54th)
Defence Force 4 (Reon Moore 17th, 22nd, 43rd pen, Justin Sadoo 45th) vs Prisons Services 1 (Shaquille Ferrier 90th)
La Horquetta Rangers 7 (Junio Assoon 31st, 45+3, 67th, Isaiah Lee 8th, Adica Ash 64th, Tyrone Charles 84th, Nathaniel Garcia 90th) vs Central FC 1 (Ricardo John 35th)
Latest Team standings
Place Team P W D L F A Pts
1 AC PoS 16 14 0 2 45 11 42
2 Club Sando FC 16 13 2 1 36 14 41
3 Defence Force 16 13 1 2 38 11 40
4 L.H Rangers 16 11 1 4 48 23 34
5 Police FC 16 8 1 7 32 28 25
6 Central FC 16 8 1 7 28 30 25
7 W Connection 16 5 3 8 15 21 18
8 Point Fortin Civic 16 4 3 9 12 20 15
9 Morvant Caledonia 16 3 2 11 17 40 11
10 Prisons Service FC 16 3 2 11 9 39 11
11 Jabloteh 16 2 2 12 17 37 8
12 Cunupia FC 16 2 2 12 9 32 8
Prisons Services FC Police FC, La Horquetta Rec. Grd, La Horquetta, 5 pm
Central FC vs AC Port-of-Spain, La Horquetta Rec. Grd, La Horquetta, 7.15 pm
Club Sando FC vs Defence Force, Mannie Ramjohn Stadium, Marabella, 4 pm
Cunupia FC vs La Horquetta Rangers, St James Police Barracks Grd, St James, 5 pm
Morvant Caledonia AIA vs Point Fortin Civic, St James Police Barracks Grd, St James, 7.5 pm
San Juan Jabloteh vs W Connection FC, Ato Boldon Rec. Grd, San Juan, 5 pm