Alpha United set up an intriguing showdown with fierce rival Slingerz FC in the League Genesis finale, downing Pele 3-1 in their semi-final showdown when the knockout round in the GFF Stag Beer Elite League continued on Wednesday.
Kithson Bain, Dwight Peters and Delon Lanferman scored for the ‘Hammers’ at the Camp Ayanganna ground with strikes in the 17th, 44th and 58th minutes respectively. On target in the loss was Gregory Richardson in the 65th minute.
With the win, Alpha United will oppose Slingerz FC in the finale on Sunday after the latter downed Fruta Conquerors 2-0 in their semi-final affair. Pele will now face-off with Fruta Conquerors in the third place playoff.
Despite having fond memories of their 3-0 win over Alpha in their last fixture, Pele quickly found themselves behind the eighth ball as Bain finished into the centre of the goal between two defenders, after collecting a left-sided pass from Williams Europe.
Lanferman then took aim at the Pele goal in the 27th minute as his left-sided strike from within the penalty box, was grasped desperately by custodian Devon Charles.
On the other end, Omallo Williams fashioned Pele’s best chance in the 38th minute, cutting in from the right side of the box, before unleashing a powerful strike which was tipped away by shot-stopper Dorville Stewart.
Nonetheless, Alpha United increased their lead one minute before the end of the first half as Peters upon racing past his marker within the left side of the box, fired his shot into the back of the net despite the keeper getting a hand to the attempt.
The second stanza saw Pele almost pulling one back in the 55th minute as a powerful Konata Manning attempt from 26 yards out in the centre of the field, sailed narrowly wide of the top right-hand corner.
It then went from bad to worse for Pele as Lanferman netted his 11th goal of the event three minutes later, finishing down the centre from within the box after collecting a flat left-sided cross from Europe.
Staring down the barrel of a 3-0 defeat, Pele eventually pulled one back as Richardson scored his 10th of the campaign, unleashing a powerful shot 25 yards from goal in the centre of the field, which took a slight deflection and settled into the top right corner.
Pele was then presented with a fabulous chance to cut the deficit to one in the 71st minute as they were awarded a penalty kick. Instead of affording Richardson or Manning the chance to take the spot-kick, Pele opted for defender Andrew Gibson from the mark.
That decision backfired horribly as Gibson placed his right-footed attempt onto the right upright, much to the disbelief of his crowd and his team-mates.
Another great chance was then wasted by Pele in the 83rd minute as Williams upon latching onto a left-sided cross, was unable to get off his strike within the centre of the box as the Alpha defence surrounded him.
In the opening semi-final, Slingerz FC downed Fruta Conquerors 2-0. Winner of the knockout round will pocket $4,000,000 while the second, third and fourth place teams will collect $2,000,000, $1,000,000 and $500,000 respectively.