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Defence Force is back: Defending champ rejoins Pro League

The defending Pro League champion football team, Defence Force, is back in business.

Defence Force assistant coach Marvin Gordon told Wired868 that the team got the good news this morning from its superiors and the players cannot wait to resume training tomorrow.

Photo: The Defence Force football team is backed to defend its crown after being suspended from competition by superiors due to the high crime rate. (Courtesy Wired868)
Photo: The Defence Force football team is back to defend its crown after being suspended from competition by superiors due to the high crime rate.
(Courtesy Wired868)

“(Head coach) Ross (Russell) called me and said we are starting tomorrow evening from 3 pm in Macqueripe,” said Gordon. “I don’t think we will play on Friday because we can only have two sessions between now and then.

“I feel by maybe next Tuesday we should play. But I will know for sure after training tomorrow.”

Gordon conceded that Defence Force would be short of match fitness but backed his side to come out firing, despite the one-month lay-off. At present, Defence Force is in seventh spot and trails by leaders DIRECTV W Connection by 19 points, although the army/coast guard combination has  five games in hand.

“I think the guys are professional enough to know it is any time we can come back into the football (competition),” he told Wired868. “I think a lot of the guys were trying to keep up their fitness during the break.

“Match fitness is a different thing and we know we are starting at a disadvantage to everyone else. But we believe that with a week’s training we are more than a match for anybody.”

Photo: Defence Force striker Devorn Jorsling. (Courtesy Wired868)
Photo: Defence Force striker Devorn Jorsling.
(Courtesy Wired868)

Star striker and former Trinidad and Tobago international Devorn Jorsling, who has three goals from his team’s eight games, has been keeping close watch on the Pro League competition and believes the army/coast guard combination can still challenge for the trophy.

He backed his colleagues to shake off the rust to not only aim for a top two finish but to overhaul W Connection, who have lost just once in the league so far this season.

“I think match fitness would hinder us in the early part and, throughout my career, fitness has been a problem for me as I tend to put on weight fast,” said Jorsling. “But as soldiers we have bad mind and if anyone can cope with it, it is Defence Force…

“I followed the league closely and I think it is up for grabs. If we can come back and win the games we have in hand, we will be four points behind W Connection and still have to play them twice.”

Photo: DIRECTV W Connection attackers Neil Benjamin Jr (left), Hashim Arcia (centre) and Joevin Jones celebrate. At present, Connection is nine points clear atop the Pro League. (Courtesy Allan V Crane/ Wired868)
Photo: DIRECTV W Connection attackers Neil Benjamin Jr (left), Hashim Arcia (centre) and Joevin Jones celebrate.
At present, Connection is nine points clear atop the Pro League.
(Courtesy Allan V Crane/ Wired868)

Gordon and Jorsling said it was torture to watch on as the league continued without them. Now, the relieved soldiers aim to make up for lost time.

“Football is something we all love,” said Gordon. “Being away from something you love and knowing you might not even get to defend your title was a real bother. The same thing happened to us two years ago when they had the SOE.

“But it is a great feeling to be back. We are just going to take it one game at a time now and try to defend the title.”

 

Editor’s note: Defence Force will face Central FC from 6 pm on Tuesday 18 February at the Ato Boldon Stadium in Couva on its first game back in the Pro League.

 

[standings league_id=2 template=extend logo=true]

About Lasana Liburd

Lasana Liburd
Lasana Liburd is the CEO and Editor at Wired868.com and a journalist with over 20 years experience at several Trinidad and Tobago and international publications including Play the Game, World Soccer, UK Guardian and the Trinidad Express.

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