Tobago clubs, Bethel SC and 1976 FC Phoenix will lock horns at the Dwight Yorke Stadium, Bacolet while Police FC hosts Harlem Strikers at the Police Barracks Training Ground, St James, both from 5 pm when the long-awaited T&T Premier Football League (TTPFL) Tier II kicks off on Saturday (May 27).
The 14 weeks of competition will feature 11 clubs facing off against each other in a round-robin format ending in August.
In addition to the quartet, who will be in action, the seven other clubs who will be participating in the inaugural competition having met the requirements of the FIFA-Normalisation Committee-led T&T Football Association are the University of T&T (UTT), San Fernando Giants, Queen’s Park Cricket Club, Defence Force, Petit Valley/Diego Martin United, Matura Re-United and Guaya United.
At the end of their one round of matches, the top six teams will contest a playoff to determine the champion.
In explaining the format of the Tier II tournament at its launch held last week, Colin, Wharfe, the TTPFL chief executive officer stated that this year due to the truncated season for both Tier I and Tier II competitions, there will be no promotion or relegation in the first season.
He said, “The recommendation coming out of the technical group was to deal with the promotion after three years. But we made the determination that promotion and relegation will begin when it’s appropriate. It may or may not be next year, or the year after, but year three is the outside range that we are thinking at and looking at.”
According to Wharfe, following the completion of the Tier I competition in the middle of June, a knockout competition will be held comprising both Tier I and Tier II clubs.
However, Wharfe noted that it is very unfortunate that the Tier II clubs will be at a disadvantage for this knockout competition, as it will take place just as their season kicks off, and with little time for the teams to get into their stride, while the Tier I clubs will be close to the completion of their season.
Tier II matches will be played at the home of the respective teams as well as national stadiums and other approved venues while subsequent seasons of both tiers are expected to run annually commencing September/October ending in May of the following year with the first full season commencing later this year in October, so the Tier II will have a quick restart as the season will be right on top of each other.
Match Day One fixtures
Bethel Sc vs 1976 FC Phoenix, Dwight Yorke Stadium, Bacolet, 5 pm
Police FC vs Harlem Strikers, St James Police Barracks Training Ground, St James, 5 pm
Sunday (May 28):
Guaya United vs Defence Force, Guayaguayare Rec. Grd, Guayaguayare, 4 pm
QPCC FC vs San Fernando Giants, St Mary’s College Ground, Serpentine Road, St Clair, 4 pm
Matura Re-United vs Petit Valley/Diego Martin Utd, Venue to be confirmed, 5 pm
UTT - bye