Alpha tackle Fruta Conquerors in warm up today @ Tucville Gr.
By Franklin Wilson
Alpha United is seriously perusing ambitions of going all the way in the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) Club Champions Cup.
The Premier local side has been drawn against Haitian club side Tempete FC in their first round match-up set for March 18 in Haiti with the second leg scheduled for March 25 in Guyana. But President of Alpha United, Odinga Lumumba speaking with Kaieteur Sport disclosed that his club has written to the Haitian authorities proposing that both matches be played in Guyana on March 27 and 29. He is awaiting a response on the proposal before going full blast with other preparations.
Meantime, serious training has been ongoing with coach Mervin ‘Pug’ Wilson in charge. Lumumba said that they are focusing on a lot of fitness work at the moment including gym work and sessions at the National Park. “The coach will start this week with drills and tactical work.”
A friendly match is set for this afternoon against Fruta Conquerors at the Tucville ground from 16:00hrs. Warm up matches are expected to be played on a regular basis as the weather improves.
And the top local club, three-time Cellink Premier League Champs, has continued to boost the team. Two Brazilians have been added to the line up, one defender and striker along with captain of the ‘Golden Jaguars’, Charles ‘Lily’ Pollard who will also serve as an assistant coach to Wilson.
The coaching staff is still looking at a number of players and Grenadian striker Kithson Bain, who was with the club for the Kashif and Shanghai tournament, is expected to return sometime in March. Kashif De Jonge, a striker based in Miami will also link up with the club in the near future.
Lumumba also disclosed that former national player now coach, Ivan Persaud who is based in the United Kingdom, will also assist the coaching staff. Persaud, has been instrumental in scouting a number of players in the UK who have played for the ‘Golden Jaguars’ including the Newton brothers.
Two periods of encampment is also being planned, one in Guyana and the other in Brazil or Lethem closer to the game for possibly three weeks, where they will be playing as many Brazilian teams as possible according to Lumumba. The first period of encampment is expected in the next two weeks.
Lumumba, a former Georgetown Football Association President, said that he is heartened by the support he has been receiving from other local clubs who have been calling to offer encouragement and to make their top players available to Alpha.
“We are representing all of Guyana in this sojourn and I am personally very gratified by the response from clubs here and we promise to make all of Guyana proud. Our intention is to go all the way.”