Portmore mayor planning return for RSPL teams

August 11, 2018
Garett Richard (left) of Dunbeholden FC skillfully shields the ball from the oncoming Hakeem Smith of Barbican FC during their encounter at the Dunbeholden Oval in the Magnum/Charley's JB/JFF promotion series on Sunday, June 24, 2018. Dunbeholden secured promotion to the Red Stripe Premier League from this competition.
File Portmore United's Roberto Johnson (left) challenges Boys Town FC's Xavian Virgo for the ball during a Red Stripe Premier League match at the Spanish Town Prison Oval on Sunday, February 18, 2018.

Portmore is now the home of two Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) teams as Dunbeholden FC was promoted to the nation's top flight via the playoffs series in June.

But even though Dunbeholden and defending champions Portmore United call the largest community in the Caribbean their home, neither of them are scheduled to play their home games within the municipality a reality that Mayor Leon Thomas admits angers him.

But he has vowed to change that reality before the 2018/19 RSPL season comes to an end.

"It angers me and all the residents in the municipality, because they would want to see the matches at home and the greatest thing that you can have is the 12th man and that will be missing," Thomas said. "However, we are expecting that somewhere down the road of this current season, we will be having matches at both venues."


Thomas said he met again with management and staff of Portmore United last week and they have outlined some tasks that need to be achieved if the defending champs are to return to Ferdie Neita Park this season.

"One of those things is lack of water at Ferdie Neita Park. We are talking to the relevant authorities to supply a water well at the field. We are having a meeting with personnel from the water resource and after that point, we will know where we are with that," Thomas said.

Portmore United has abandoned the field for the past three seasons.

As far as Dunbeholden FC is concerned, Thomas said that talks are far advanced to secure funding for the refurbishing of the Dunbeholden field.

"We want both teams to be playing within the Municipality. For Dunbeholden, several discussions are far in advance with companies to come on board to help fix their field. We have gotten some positive responses, and they will be starting some construction work soon," he said.

But until the football fields in Portmore can meet the standards require to host a RSPL game, both teams will play their home games at the Spanish Town Prison Oval.

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