CIFA FA Cup this weekend

The popular FA Cup, presented this year by Western Union, will have a new home this Sunday, May 06th; in what can be called everybody’s game, Latinos FC and Elite SC will take a measure of each other in order to lift the coveted Cup. It will be a battle of experience against youth.

FA Cup

From left to right, Juan Rives and Marlon Moore for Latinos FC and Benjamin Cupid and Gregory Ebanks for Elite SC.

The battle started in March 03rd, when Latinos finally overcame Tigers FC by 2-1, in what was considered a revenge after Tigers had edged them out of the CIFA DIGICEL Cayman Cup earlier this year. Elite SC did the same with North Side FC after an even 1-1 score after extra time, in which they ended up beating them by 4-3 on penalty kicks.

The second round saw tougher games for both teams, when Latinos managed to defeat Roma by the minimum difference, the same way as Elite, who astonishingly threw Scholars International out of the Competition by the same margin.

Then, Latinos went on to overcome Sunset easily on the Semi-Final by 3-1, whereas Elite had to work harder to defeat a very solid East End UFC by 5-4 on penalty kicks after extra time saw them ending up with a level 1-1 score.

Elite SC’s Coach Gregory Ebanks could not hide his delight at reaching the finals ‘I am astonished and delighted to be in the Western Union F.A Cup Finals, with these youngsters; no one would have predicted Elite in the finals’. He also stated that concentration will play a big part on the game on Sunday. ‘Concentration is the key factor for my team; once their confidence takes place we can give them a challenge. Watching the Foster’s League final between Scholars & Latinos was very educational; I saw a few lapses in concentration on Latinos’ side at times. Elite have these lapses often, and if we can reduce this, we will be able to hold Latinos off for most of the time.’ Coach Ebanks also manifested that he will try to amp up his defense in order to deny scoring opportunities to the opposite team. ‘My defenders must do everything possible to deny opportunities, and my midfield players have to maintain the steam in the middle to keep up with the talent of the opponent, I am aware that we will have little opportunities to score, due to the fact that they are an attacking team, by being an attacking team this forms the best sense of defense. At the end of the night, my major concern is that football wins, and this is all Elite Sports Club is about’, he stated. It is a well-known fact that one of Latinos FC trademarks of playing is their formidable attack and Coach Ebanks is very aware of this fact. ‘To beat Latinos will require a lot of patience, concentration and commitment from our part. If we don’t allow any lapses in our concentration that will prevent them from coming forward to attack and then it will allow us to sustain the game until the end’, he concluded.

On the other hand, Juan Rives, Coach for Latinos FC, said that the preparation for his team will be more psychological than physical. ‘Right now our morale is a little bit low after loosing the Foster’s League title having spent the entire season undefeated, so I am concentrating in building the psyche of my team back up. Our preparation for this final is being more didactic, pedagogical, and more mental. We are trying to analyze our mistakes and learn from them, as to not repeat them on Sunday. Physically, our team is at its peak’, he stated. After losing out to Tigers in the DIGICEL Cup Semi-Finals, and to Scholars in the FOSTER’S League Finals, Latinos are hungry to win. ‘We have already made two mistakes so we need to win this one’, Coach Rives expressed.

This weekend, the action starts at 4.30 p.m. with the U16 FA Cup Final between Bodden Town FC and Future SC and then continues at 7.00 p.m. with the highly anticipated FA Cup Final between Latinos FC and Elite SC, at the Annex.

For more information on CIFA events and activities visit our website at www.caymanfootball.ky

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