KINGSTON, Jamaica - The 2018 Scotiabank CONCACAF League will mark the return of two Jamaican clubs to CONCACAF play: Arnett Gardens and Portmore United.
Arnett Gardens have qualified for the SCL based on their runner-up finish at the 2018 CONCACAF Caribbean Club Championship after falling to Atletico Pantoja 6-5 in penalty kicks (0-0) in the final.
A return to CONCACAF competition has been a long time coming for Arnett Gardens.
The club's last foray in a CONCACAF tournament came in the 2003 CONCACAF Champions Cup when they were narrowly eliminated by Mexican club Necaxa 1-0 on aggregate in the Round of 16.
However, the island club does have a track record of success in CONCACAF play. In the 2001 CONCACAF Giants Cup, Arnett Gardens eliminated Suriname's Transvaal in the first round 6-2 on aggregate in which Denton Shedden and Gerald Neil each scored two goals during the series.
That set up a quarterfinal date with MLS side DC United. A 3-0 first leg defeat proved too much for Arnett Gardens to overcome in the second leg, as they succumbed 5-1 on aggregate.
For Portmore United, the SCL is familiar territory. Just like in 2018, the club qualified for the first ever SCL in 2017 with a third-place finish in the 2017 CONCACAF Caribbean Club Championship.
Drawn with Panamanian side Plaza Amador, Portmore United fought valiantly but were eliminated 5-4 in penalties are a 1-1 draw on aggregate in the Round of 16.
Similar to Arnett Gardens, Portmore United featured in the CONCACAF Champions Cup, appearing in the 2006 edition when they were eliminated 7-3 by Club America of Mexico in the quarterfinals.
Now with another shot at CONCACAF competition in the 2018 SCL, both Arnett Gardens and Portmore United will be aiming to make a name for themselves and for Jamaican football.