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RSPL set for September 16 kick-off

Portmore United striker Javon East (left) dribbles away from Waterhouse FC midfielder Keithy Simpson during the 2017-18 Red Stripe Premier League final at National Stadium in April 2018. Portmore United won 4-3 on penalties to lift the title. (Photo: Dwayne Richards)

The 2018-19 Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) season, which was previously scheduled to start later this month, is now set for kick-off on September 16.

According to the Professional Football Association of Jamaica (PFAJ), the date was finalised following a meeting with the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) at its St Lucia Avenue-based offices last week.

The PFAJ, in a release, explained that the new season was pushed back due to the number of other “national and regional football events” that will be taking place between the end of this month and the second week in September.

These include the Concacaf Nations League involving the national team, the Women’s World Cup qualifiers, as well as Concacaf club competition involving two of the country’s top Premier League teams — Portmore United and Arnett Gardens FC.

“Now all has been finalised and all entities are fully engaged to make this season one of the best ever. The PFAJ is committed to the upliftment of the game across the league and will shortly advise the date for the official launch of the 2018-2019 league.

“Most clubs have been busy during the transfer window — which opened on July 1 and closes on August 31st — securing the best available talent to ensure they can make the best push for success during the season,” the release stated.

The PFAJ also noted that efforts are continuing to improve all the playing surfaces and venues to enhance the quality of the football in the league.

The two promoted teams, Mount Pleasant FA out of St Ann and St Catherine-based Dunbeholden FC, will join champions Portmore United, last season’s beaten finalists Waterhouse FC, and eight other teams in vying for the coveted trophy and prize money on offer in the upcoming season.

Harbour View, Cavaliers, Arnett Gardens, The University of the West Indies, Montego Bay United, Tivoli Gardens, Humble Lion, and Reno are the other teams set to feature.

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