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W Connection, Central FC eye final
Two-time winners, DirecTV W Connection and Central FC will start as heavy favourites to reach the Lucozade Sport Goal Shield final on Friday April 25, when semifinal matches take place at the Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva from 6 pm today.
In the opener, W Connection, which swept past San Juan Jabloteh 3-1 in its quarterfinal and was previous winners in 2009 and 2013 faces Pt Fortin Civic FC, which ousted Defence Force 4-3 on penalty-kicks after a 1-1 draw.
The “Savonetta Boys” who have already won this season’s Digicel Charity Shield, Toyota Classic and FA Trophy titles are also coming off a 6-1 beating of Police in the Digicel Pro League on Tuesday at the same Couva venue led by a treble from Suriname’s 19-year-old Dimitre Apai. Pt Fortin slipped past North East Stars, 1-0 at the Marvin Lee Stadium, Macoya, thanks to the league’ top scorer, Marcus Joseph’s 54th minute strike, his 13th of the season.
Looking ahead to the match, W Connection coach, Stuart Charles-Fevrier noted that the semifinal will be an interesting game against Civic.
He added, “We drew (1-1) in the last meeting against them and I’m sure that this semifinal game will generate a lot of interest as well.
In their two other league meetings, W Connection won the first, 2-0 while Pt Fortin handed its opponent its first league loss of the campaign, in a 2-1 triumph in the second round battle.
Civic are also eyeing a place in the final and according to coach for Reynold Carrington—a former W Connection player and assistant coach—knockout tournaments tend to bring the best out of some clubs and his was no different as they were simply focused on Civic reaching its first Final.
“We are against Connection and we are aware that no two games are the same,” said the Civic coach. They are at the top of the league at present but this is a new game and a different competition and we are going to put our best effort and try to reach our first final.”
And in the night’s other semis, Central FC, 4-0 quarterfinal victors over 2012 winner and last year’s semifinalist Caledonia AIA matches skills with 2010 champions, North East Stars which edged Police 2-1 in their last-eight encounter.
The “Central Sharks” have also stepped up their goalscoring as they also crushed Caledonia 5-1 in a league encounter on Tuesday at Couva inspired by a Willis Plaza treble and would be no doubt out to continue that trend against Stars, who were beaten on penalties in last year’s final.
However, both clubs have met twice so far this season, with both matches ending in 1-1 draws on both occasions.
The semifinal winners meet in the final on Friday April 25 with the champions set to take away an increased base prize, from $20,000 to $30,000 and $3,000 for every goal scored in the final, $2,000 for every goal scored in the semi-final, and $1,000 for every goal scored in the quarter-final round.
The runners-up prize structure pays out a $10,000 base amount and $1,500 for every goal scored in the Final, $1,000 for every goal scored in the semi-final, and $500 for every goal scored in the quarter-final round.
Today’s Lucozade Sport Goal Shield semifinals:
Venue: Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva.
W Connection vs Pt Fortin Civic, 6pm
Central FC vs North East Stars, 8pm