THE Diego Martin Sports Complex has become such a successful football venue, regularly attracting a large turnout of fans, that it will be the stage of tonight’s First Citizens Cup final. It will be the first time the final has ever held in Diego Martin.
Stars-studded Terminix La Horquetta Rangers will attempt to end the competition with a one hundred percent record when they take on Police FC tonight from 7 p.m.
Rangers have won all six matches played in the competition, beating Police (1-0), Defence Force (4-1), W Connection (2-0), Point Fortin Civic (5-2) and Central FC (4-2) before shutting out Cunupia FC 3-0 at the semi-final stage. But their biggest test came against the lawmen with just one goal eventually separating the teams in the opening match of the competition.
Trained by Dave Quamina, Rangers have a bevy of local stars in their squad from which to choose their starting line-up, Among them are Tyronne Charles, Aikim Andrews, Ross Russell Jnr, Glenroy Samuel and Kadeem Corbin, all of whom have worn Trinidad and Tobago national team colours at youth and senior levels. Leading them will be their goal-scoring midfielder, Jamal Creighton. Additionally, unlike some of the other teams, Quamina can call on equally good players off the bench, the likes of Keron “Ball Pest” Cummins, Hayden Tinto, Samuel Delice, Jomoul Francois, Jameel Antoine and Kishun Seecharan, among others.
Police may not boast such rich pickings but they have a solid bunch of players who have been together for many years, including solid-as-a-rock utility player Elijah Belgrave, who can both defend and score goals; consistent striker Christon Thomas, Kareem Freitas, Jameel Perry, national team goalkeeper Adrian Foncette, veteran and influential midfielder Todd Ryan and fresh recruit and former national under-20 midfielder Jabari Mitchell among them. On their day, the Richard Hood-trained Police outfit can beat anyone, such aswhen defeating in-form Club Sando 1-0 in the semi-finals.
Police, however, will be aware that they need to be at their all-round best to beat a Rangers team with so many attacking options.