Portmore won't idle on Plaza
PORTMORE United coach Shavar Thomas said an away goal against Panama's Plaza Amador in tonight's return game at the Estadio Rommel Fernandez in Panama City is all they need to win the tie and move on to the quarter-finals of the CONCACAF League.
Jamaica beat Plaza Amador 1-0 in their CONCACAF League round-of-16 first leg game at the National Stadium off Jermie Lynch's goal last Wednesday.
Portmore United arrived in Panama City on Monday and had their final practice session at the Rommel Fernandez Stadium yesterday morning for tonight's seven o'clock kick-off. The winner of the tie will advance to the quarter-final stage scheduled to start on August 17.
Though Portmore hold the advantage, Thomas and his troops anticipate a very difficult evening. However, he is confident they have prepared enough to see themselves through to the next phase.
"We have the advantage so we know they will have to come at us. It will be a tough game. They have the home-field advantage and are used to the conditions here. We also expect the crowd to be behind them, so we know the task we have," he said.
"We have prepared tactically, physically and mentally. Once we apply what we have addressed as a team, I am confident that we can get a favourable result," he added.
Thomas noted that protecting their advantage is very important and they will have to defend as a group to see the game through. He, however, said they will also be hunting that crucial away goal to secure their berth in the next round.
"We had a very strong defensive display at home and prevented the Plaza team from getting an away goal, which is crucial in this competition. We are now the away team, so while we already have the lead we will definitely be trying to add to that, especially with the away-goal rule in effect," he said.
The inaugural Scotiabank CONCACAF League champions will earn a berth to the CONCACAF Champions League slated for February-May 2018. The winner of the CONCACAF Champions League will represent the region at the FIFA Club World Cup in the United Arab Emirates in December 2018.