Portmore United players (pictured) celebrate after beating host Puerto Rico FC in a Caribbean Club Championship game on March 16, 2017, in Bayamon, Puerto Rico . (Photo courtesy of Puerto Rico FC)
PORTMORE, Jamaica -- The last time Portmore United played in a CONCACAF competition was in 2006, when it was eliminated from the Champions’ Cup at the quarterfinal stage by Mexico’s Club America, 7-3 on aggregate.
Now, 11 years later, the Jamaican club is targeting a place in the 2018 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League, as its players look to realize career aspirations.
On Wednesday, Portmore -- runner-up in last season’s Red Stripe Premier League – was drawn into Group B for the final round of the 2017 Caribbean Club Championship, facing Racing FC (Haiti) and San Juan Jabloteh (Trinidad & Tobago) on May 16 and 18, respectively. All games will be at Hasely Crawford Stadium in Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago.
“Playing at the CONCACAF Champions League is a door that opens to us to play football overseas” said forward Tremaine Stewart. ”It is a goal that all players in the squad desire. Yes, our heart is with Portmore, however, it also opens the opportunity to play for the national team of Jamaica. So getting wins over Racing FC and San Juan Jabloteh are key.”
Impressive performances in the 2006 CONCACAF Champions’ Cup helped Portmore United stars Omar Daley and Jason Morrison earn contracts overseas.
“It is the opportunity of a lifetime” defender Damano Solomon remarked. “We are confident that with the group we have to play in Trinidad that we can pull through with flying colours. The team is gelled and the cohesion is good, so everything is falling into place for us.”
Portmore United will be looking for a renaissance come May.