KINGSTON, Jamaica – Red Stripe Premier League runner-up, Portmore United is poised ahead of their Scotiabank CONCACAF League clash with CD Plaza Amador out of Panama.
The first leg fixture in the tie is scheduled for Wednesday, August 2 at 7:00PM at the National Stadium with the return leg set for August 9 in Panama.
The five-time National Premier League champions will be seeking to get the better of the Panamanian League runner-up to book their spot in the quarter-final of the competition.
Portmore will be looking to a host of young stars as well as experienced squad members such as Ewan Grandison, Ricardo Morris and Michael Binns, who are currently away with the Reggae Boyz in the CONCACAF Gold Cup and will be back ahead of the tie. The winners of the Scotiabank CONCACAF League will gain qualification to the 2018 CONCACAF Champions League.
General Manager of the Portmore United team, Clive Marshall believes the team is strong enough to see off their Panamanian counterparts and move on to the next phase of the competition.
“I believe we have the strength and quality in the squad to get the better of the Panamanians and advance to the next round. We have a lot of youthful players mixed with experienced campaigners and the fact that Binns, Morris and Grandison are at the Gold Cup playing at such a high level ahead of the tie will benefit the team. The first leg home tie is crucial, so we need to ensure that we capitalize at the National Stadium so we have an advantage heading to Panama on August 9. We will need the full support of Jamaica to succeed at our task,” said Marshall.
CONCACAF officials were in Jamaica on Monday, July 17 to conduct the final inspections on the National Stadium field and lights ahead of the fixture.
“There were two inspections carried out by authorised CONCACAF officials on July 6 and again on July 17. The July 6 inspection was a match pitch and training facility inspection while the latest visit was to inspect the lights at the National Stadium for the game. We will be ready on August 2 to host CD Plaza Amador with a few minor adjustments based on the recommendations of the CONCACAF officials,” concluded Marshall.
Plaza Amador is one of the oldest football clubs in Panama. They have won the Panamanian League on six occasions with their first title coming in 1988 and their most recent in 2016. Portmore United will be seeking to get past the renowned Central American club and advance to the quarter-final of the CONCACAF League with sights on a berth in the 2018 CONCACAF Champions League.
Portmore United advanced to the quarter-finals of the CONCACAF Champions League in 2006, the best performance by a Jamaican club in that tournament to date.