Relegation scrap to play out in JPL transfer window
WITH NINE rounds of matches contested in this season’s Jamaica Premier League (JPL), clubs in the lower half of the table are eagerly anticipating moves in January’s transfer window to bolster their chances of advancing up the league table.
Bottom club and newcomers Faulkland FC, out of Montego Bay, have been busy, attempting to spruce up their inexperienced roster, which only has three players with Premier League experience.
Assistant manager at Faulkland Joel Hyde says his team has already begun bringing in some new faces with the signing of Montego Bay United midfielder Donavan Kerr. Hyde also mentioned that the club also has its eyes on Arnett Gardens midfielder Ajuma Johnson.
Without a win this season, the Catherine Hall-based club has conceded the most goals in the league so far, 24, and Hyde added that this is an area of priority that needs urgent attention.
“We are looking to bring in about 10 players, with an emphasis on the positions of centre half, left back, and defensive midfield. Yes, we are in last place in the league, but on the goal-scoring side, we have not been doing too badly. It’s the number of goals that we are conceding that is hurting us, and we plan to address that,” said Hyde.
Vere United, who are in second-to-last place in the league, are also yet to win a game. Their club president, Lothian Cousins, says they, too, will be on the hunt for players while still giving opportunities to some of their young players.
“We are exploring all options available to us to improve the club’s standing in the table. We are also placing emphasis on developing our young talents, particularly those from the parish of Clarendon,” said Cousins.
The Linval Dixon-coached Vere United have the worst attacking record in the league to date, having scored just two goals in their nine games. This startling statistic is one that Cousins and his team will be looking to address.
“We are in discussions with a few strikers with a view to improving our options in that department,” said Cousins.
The other newcomer in the league, Chapelton Maroons, is also finding life in the JPL tough. They sit in 11th place with eight points from their nine games.
On Sunday, Chapelton had only 14 players on their team sheet, and coach Lenworth Hyde is also expecting to do some business in the January transfer window to address those issues.
“We are supposed to be getting a couple of players soon as we expect two players from Molynes and two from Arnett, so by this weekend, we should have our full complement of players,” said Lenworth Hyde.
While the lower table teams have been talking up transfers, CEO of the PFJL Owen Hill says the window has been inactive so far for some of the top teams, with only one player up to press time, Dasha Satchwell, moving from Tivoli Gardens to Humble Lion.
Hill is, however, expecting that scenario to change quickly as teams look to strengthen their squads before the window closes.
“So far, the transfer activities among the elite clubs have been relatively slow, nonetheless, there are signs within the marketplace indicating a few shuffles to happen. Teams will be looking to retool and bolster their squads as they look ahead to the business end of the season,” said Hill.