National players clash for USL title
National players Kevon Lambert, Damion Lowe and Jordan Scarlett will be looking to finish their respective seasons as champions when the Tampa Bay Rowdies face Phoenix Rising in the United Soccer League (USL) championship final this Sunday in St Petersburg, Florida. The match time is 8:30 p.m.
Scarlett, who plays for the Tampa Bay Rowdies, will hope to complete a great season which saw him named to the USL Championship All-League second team earlier this week. Meanwhile, Phoenix Rising are in their second final in three years and will feature both Lambert and Lowe, who have been recently called up to the senior men's squad for the upcoming friendlies against Saudi Arabia.
Lambert, who is in his third season with Phoenix, says that the fact that a Jamaican will capture the crown no matter what, has increased the motivation levels of both himself and Scarlett.
"To be playing against Jordan, who is also a Jamaican, will be a very special moment, too, and I think that will definitely increase his and my motivation going into the finals," Lambert told STAR Sports.
Scarlett agrees that having multiple national players in the title game displays the quality of talent that Jamaica has to offer.
"It shows that the country has a good pool of players to select from, which is a good thing," Scarlett said.
Tampa Bay advanced to the final by defeating Louisville City in the Eastern Conference Championship, which features national midfielder Devon Williams. Meanwhile, Phoenix Rising needed to win two consecutive penalty shoot-outs to advance to the final. Phoenix finished with the second-best record in the regular season, which was condensed because of the coronavirus pandemic.