Fri | Apr 19, 2024

Arnett inch closer to JPL top four

Published:Monday | March 4, 2024 | 12:10 AMLennox Aldred/Gleaner Writer
Arnett Gardens’ goal-scorer Roderick Granville (right) is in a race for the ball with Vere United’s Odane Murray during their Jamaica Premier League encounter at Effortville Community yesterday.
Arnett Gardens’ goal-scorer Roderick Granville (right) is in a race for the ball with Vere United’s Odane Murray during their Jamaica Premier League encounter at Effortville Community yesterday.

Former champions Arnett Gardens moved within three points of the top four in the Jamaica Premier League (JPL) following their hard-fought 1-0 away win over Vere United in their encounter at the Wembley Centre of Excellence yesterday.

The Xavier Gilbert-coached ‘Junglists’ notched their 11th win from 20 games and now sit in fifth place on 38 points. That is three points behind Portmore United, who were held to a 1-1 draw by Montego Bay United.

With some of their key players away with the national team in Trinidad, Arnett knew that they needed to grind out a positive result against a Vere United team that scored six goals at home last week against Lime Hall.

The Junglists soaked up some early pressure and would get the go-ahead goal in the 23rd minute as some good work down the right side from Rushike Kelson found Roderick Granville inside the area, and the latter had time and space to slot past Keneil Petrie in the Vere United goal.

Arnett Gardens thought they had doubled their lead just before the half, but an own goal was disallowed following a foul on goalkeeper Petrie.

Vere United came out more purposeful in the second stanza, and they only had themselves to blame for not getting the equaliser as striker Javon Smith fluffed an easy chance right on the goal line with custodian Eric Edwards in no man’s land.

Frantic defending for the last quarter of the match saw Arnett holding on to the one-goal lead and, ultimately, the win, which was pleasing to coach Gilbert.

“We knew that it was going to be tough playing down here with the wind, the surface, and the fact that they were coming off a huge win. There is also the fact that we have never won here. We weren’t allowed to play our free-flowing football, but in these games, you have to find a way to get across the line, and I am glad we did,” Gilbert said.

After picking up their 11th defeat of the campaign, Vere’s coach, Linval Dixon, put the loss down to faulty finishing.

“We started a bit slow, and sloppy play around the back cost us a goal, and it is hard to take. We got our chances to score, and we didn’t, and it seemed like we scored all our goals from last week,” said Dixon.

In the meantime, Tivoli Gardens picked up their 12th win and sit in third place following a 4-0 drubbing of Treasure Beach. Mount Pleasant leapt to the top of the standings with 46 points after a 1-0 win over Waterhouse.

Yesterday’s results

Lime Hall 1 Molynes 2

Portmore 1 Montego Bay 1

Treasure Beach 0 Tivoli 5

Vere United 0 Arnett 1

Waterhouse 0 Mount Pleasant 1

Today’s games

5 p.m: Cavalier vs Humble Lion

7:30 p.m: Dunbeholden vs Harbour View

Both games will be played at the Stadium East field