CFU Club Champions Cup
T&T Guardian

Published: 8 Mar 2010

bmobile Joe Public coach, Derek King and club captain Kerry Baptiste, second from right in front-row, celebrate with their clubmates after capturing the Digicel Pro Bowl title at the Hasely Crawford Stadium, Mucurapo last December. It was one of five titles won by the “Eastern Lions” last season. Photo: Anthony Harris

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Digicel T&T Pro League champion, Joe Public will contest Group C of the revised Caribbean Football Union’s Club Champions Cup in St Vincent and The Grenadines, next month. The “Eastern Lions”, winner of a record-breaking five titles during the last year’s domestic season in T&T, were originally due to face Dominica’s Bath Estate in a home-and-away preliminary round series on March 5 and 19. However, following the 33rd Congress of the CFU last week in T&T, a number of changes were made to the tournament schedule.

Joe Public, the two-time CFU champion, will now face Suriname’s Leo Victor, Bermuda’s Devonshire Cougars, and Avenues United of the host nation in the opening round from March 19 to 23. The group is one of four that begins the region’s process to select its trio of qualifiers for next season’s Concacaf Champions League. This year’s tournament is a three-round event that will conclude with a final, four-team league phase from May 4 to 8 in Puerto Rico.

Group A competition in the Netherlands Antilles from March 16 to 20 will feature River Plate of Puerto Rico, Racing Club of Haiti, as well as local sides CSD Barber and Hubentut Fortuna. Group B from March 23 to 27 in Puerto Rico will pit System 3 of SVG, Defence Force of Guyana and local side Bayamon, while Group D from March 16 to 20 in Guyana will be contested between Walking Boys of Suriname, Bath Estate of Dominica, and host side Alpha United. The group winners, runners-up and best third-place team will advance to the second round along with seeded sides the Puerto Rico Islanders, Tempete FC of Haiti, and San Juan Jabloteh of T&T. Puerto Rico and T&T will host two groups each.

The Islanders, the Group D winner, and Group A runner-up will participate in one of the Puerto Rico groups, with Tempete, the Group B winner, and the Group C runner-up making up the other. One of the T&T groups will comprise Jabloteh, the best third-place team, and the Group A winner, while the other will be made up of the Group C winner, along with the runners-up of Groups B and D. The four second-round group winners will then advance to the final league phase in Puerto Rico.

A new CFU champion will be crowned after last year’s winner and four-time champions W Connection (2001, 2002, 2006 and 2009) failed to secure a top two finish in the T&T Pro League which guarantees a place in the tournament. Last year, W Connection defeated Islanders 2–1 with Dominican Republic striker Jonathan Fana Frias, now on loan at the same club, scoring both goals.

Schedule

FIRST ROUND
(Group winners, runners-up, best third-place advance)

Group A
At Netherlands Antilles
Tuesday, March 16
River Plate (P/Rico) vs Racing (Haiti)
CSD Barber (N/Antilles) vs Hubentut Fortuna (N/Antilles)

Thursday, March 18
Hubentut Fortuna (N/Antilles) vs River Plate (P/Rico)
CSD Barber (N/Antilles) vs. Racing (Haiti)

Saturday, March 20
Racing (Haiti) vs. Hubentut Fortuna (N/Antilles)
CSD Barber (N/Antilles) vs River Plate (P/Rico)

Group B
At Puerto Rico
Tuesday, March 23
Bayamon FC (P/Rico) vs System 3 (SVG)

Thursday, March 25
System 3 (SVG) vs Defence Force (Guy)

Saturday, March 27
Bayamon FC (P/Rico) vs Defence Force (Guy)

Group C
At St Vincent & the Grenadines

Friday, March 19
Leo Victor (Sur) vs Joe Public (T&T)
Avenues United (SVG) vs. Devonshire Cougars (Ber)
Sunday March 21
Devonshire Cougars (Ber) vs Leo Victor (Sur)
Avenues United (SVG) vs Joe Public (T&T)

Tuesday March 23
Joe Public (T&T) vs Devonshire Cougars (Ber)
Avenues United (SVG) vs Leo Victor (Sur)

Group D
At Guyana
Tuesday, March 16
Alpha United (Guy) vs Bath Estate (Dom)

Thursday, March 18
Bath Estate (Dom) vs Walking Boys (Sur)

Saturday, March 20
Alpha United (Guy) vs Walking Boys (Sur)

SECOND ROUND
(Group winners advance)
At Puerto Rico
Group A: P/Rico Islanders (P/Rico), Group D winner , Group A runner-up
Group B: Tempete FC (Haiti), Group B
winner, Group C
runner-up

Tuesday, April 13
P/Rico Islanders (P/Rico) vs. Group A runner-up
Tempete FC (Haiti) vs. Group C runner-up

Thursday, April 15
Group A runner-up vs. Group D winner
Group C runner-up vs. Group B winner

Saturday, April 17
P/Rico Islanders (PUR) vs Group D winner
Tempete FC (HAI) vs Group B winner

At T&T:
Group C: San Juan Jabloteh (T&T), Group A winner, Best third-place team
Group D: Group C winner, Group B runner-up, Group D runner-up

Tuesday, April 13
San Juan Jabloteh (TRI) vs. Best-third pace team
Group C winner vs. Group D runner-up

Thursday, April 15
Best third-place team vs Group A winner
Group D runner-up vs Group B runner-up

Saturday, April 17
San Juan Jabloteh (T&T) vs Group A winner
Group C winner vs Group B runner-up

FINAL ROUND
At Puerto Rico

Tuesday, May 4
Group A winner vs Group C winner
Group B winner vs Group D winner

Thursday, May 6
Group C winner vs. Group B winner
Group A winner vs. Group D winner

Saturday, May 8
Group D winner vs. Group C winner
Group A winner vs. Group B winner

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Edwin Jusino
Director Ejecutivo de FutbolBoricua.net. Actualmente estudiante de Historia de las Américas en programa combinado Maestría/PhD de la Universidad Interamericana de Puerto Rico, Recinto Metropolitano. Lleva más de una década cubriendo el fútbol de Puerto Rico. Actualmente está trabajando su disertación doctoral sobre el pasado presidente de la FPF, el Dr. Roberto Monroig. Hincha del Club Atlético de Madrid y de la Selección Nacional de Fútbol de Puerto Rico. Puede contactarle via twitter o Instagram en @erjusinoa