Tue | Jun 28, 2022

Speid eyes deep run in Concacaf club competitions

Published:Saturday | May 14, 2022 | 12:09 AMLivingston Scott/Gleaner Writer
Rudolph Speid.
Rudolph Speid.

Cavalier coach Rudolph Speid is hoping the two Jamaican representatives in the Caribbean Club championships, Waterhouse and Cavalier, will not only advance to the Concacaf Champions and Concacaf League competitions but progress as far as possible...

Cavalier coach Rudolph Speid is hoping the two Jamaican representatives in the Caribbean Club championships, Waterhouse and Cavalier, will not only advance to the Concacaf Champions and Concacaf League competitions but progress as far as possible into the confederation’s club tournaments as well.

The Caribbean Club Championships kicked off in the Dominican Republic yesterday and will run until May 25.

Speid said his team was an inexperienced one but they will be doing everything to be successful. He is also wishing the best for last season’s Jamaica Premier League (JPL) runners-up Waterhouse, as he believes it’s time local clubs start becoming more competitive at the Concacaf level.

“Some of the Cavalier players have never travelled before. It is a young team but we have a lot of ambition, talent, skill and desire. We lack experience but we hope we can get it all together and we will do what it takes to achieve the objective,” he said.

“The objective is to finish in the top three,” he added.

Cavalier, last season’s JPL champions, are in Group A and will face Haitian champions Violette and Dominica Republic’s champion Cibao and Speid is relishing the challenge in what he considers the strongest group.

“We are in the zone of death. We have the champions of Dominican Republic and the champions of Haiti. And with the three champions in the same group it must be considered the group of death,” Speid said.

He noted that Waterhouse will be up against the runners-up teams from Haiti (Arcahaie) and Dominican Republic (Vega Real), and he is hoping that the Marcel Gayle-coached Waterhouse and Cavalier can advance from the Caribbean tournament.

“Waterhouse will have it a little easier because they have the runners-up teams in their zone. I wish them luck, both of us come from Jamaica and I want the two of us to make a long run in the Concacaf tournament.

“Whenever we talk about Concacaf, the talk is that Jamaican clubs are not doing much when they come up to this level. We have to change that at some point in time and there is no better opportunity than now,” he said.

“The JPL has improved, it has helped us to be better teams and better clubs because during the pandemic we got a lot of things organised.

“I believe the clubs have stepped up their organisation and at the end of the day, we expect this to facilitate the long-term goal we want to achieve.

“So I want us to qualify for the next round and make a long run as possible and try to create some upsets,” he said.

Cavalier play Violette tomorrow and Cibao FC on Tuesday. Waterhouse take on Arachaie tomorrow and Vega Real on Tuesday.

The 2022 Caribbean Club Championship will be the 24th and final edition. This year’s winners will qualify to the 2023 Concacaf Champions League, while the second- and third-place teams will qualify to the 2022 Concacaf League.

livingston.scott@gleanerjm.com