No home advantage for Tivoli Gardens
Though the Premier League is finally set to kick off on Sunday, Tivoli Gardens' fans will have to wait much longer to see their team in action at the Edward Seaga Sports Complex home, possibly another month when resurfacing is expected to be completed.
"The field will take about four weeks to be ready for Premier League games this season," manager Brian Rose told STAR Sports yesterday.
"It has gone through grassing during the summer and rolling, so we will rest it for another month before the team can play on the field," he said, adding that a decision is yet to be made on where their games will be played.
"We have not decided yet on where our home games will be played," Rose said.
Meanwhile, with the team unable to train on the field, head coach Omar Edwards has been conducting gym work along with practice games against schoolboy teams.
"Our preparation for the season has gone well, so far. We started preseason on July 17, done physical work and practice games against some Manning Cup teams," Edwards shared.
"We have used Santos field at Bell Chung Stadium and the Tivoli Gardens High field for training sessions," he added.
Edwards added players such as Sean Coleman, Tevin Garnett and Kenroy Lumther, all coming from relegated Jamalco, as well as Andrew White (Maverley-Hughenden), Lloyd Tyme (Portmore United), Andre Moulton (Santos), Romaine Linton (Ensom City) and O'Brian Reid (Newland) during the transfer window that closed on August 25.
VETERAN PLAYERS RETAINED
Tivoli have retained the nucleus of their team with players such as veteran striker Jermaine 'Teddy' Johnson, Elton Thompson, captain Romain Breakenridge and Tevin Shaw.
"The new players have adopted well and their attitude is great. We are ready for all teams this season," Edwards, who spent 11 weeks in Hungary at a coaching seminar earlier this year said.
The 2017-18 Red Stripe Premier League was originally set to start on September 3, but was put on hold after referees and match officials withdrew their services for more than $4 million outstanding payment last season. The referees and match officials were paid more than a week ago.
Another snag was a long-running dispute between Montego Bay United and the Premier League Clubs Association, at odds over sponsorship money owed, a row settled on the eve of Saturday's Jamaica Football Federation presidential election won by Michael Ricketts.