Caribbean Club Championship: Racing FC advances in Group A

Racing FC players (pictured) celebrate after beating Greenbay Hoppers in the Caribbean Club Championship on February 26, 2017, in St. John's, Antigua & Barbuda.

ST. JOHN’S, Antigua & Barbuda – Racing FC (Haiti) earned a 2-0 win over host Greenbay Hoppers on Sunday and advanced to the 2017 Caribbean Club Championship finals after finishing atop the Group A table on goal difference over Inter Moengotapoe (Suriname), +6 to +5.

Racing and Inter completed play with seven points each, including a 2-2 draw against each other on February 22.

Earlier in the day, Inter defeated Bequia United (St. Vincent & the Grenadines, 4-1, but that single conceded goal – a converted penalty kick by Mark Browne – was enough to see the Surinamese side be edged for first place.

Inter entered the match knowing that it may have to win by a large margin, especially since Racing posted a 4-0 victory over Bequia. Stefano Rijssel (22’) got things started on the right foot with his second goal of the competition midway through the first half, only for Browne to level six minutes prior to the break. Jurmen Vallei (65’ pen) restored Inter Moengotapoe’s lead 20 minutes into the second half and then Kareen Kwasie (90’, 90’+4) struck for two late goals to punctuate the scoreline.

In the doubleheader’s nightcap, Racing got the result it needed thanks to first-half goals by Bendy Charles (38’) and Jamesley Daniel (43’).

Only the winners of the five, first-round groups will advance to the final round, where they will join two-time defending champion Central FC (Trinidad & Tobago).

Last year, Central FC defended its Caribbean title by prevailing over fellow Trinidadian side DirecTV W Connection in the final for the second straight year, 3-0.

The champion of the Caribbean Club Championship earns a place in the newly re-formatted CONCACAF Champions League, while the second-, third- and fourth-placed clubs will participate in the Confederation’s newly launched club championship tournament for Caribbean and Central American teams, which kicks off in August.

First Round

GROUP A (Antigua Recreation Ground – St. John’s, Antigua & Barbuda)

 Racing FC 2 1 0 8 2
Inter Moengotapoe 3 0 8
Greenbay Hoppers 1 0 2 2 5 3
Bequia United 3 0 3 0

February 22, 2017

Racing FC 2, Inter Moengotapoe 2
Marckens Dorisca 17’, 68’ / Kareem Kwasie 9’; Naldo Kwasie 68’

Greenbay Hoppers 2, Bequia United 1
Tomorley Thomas 13’; own-goal, Kamol Bess 70’ / Kamal Ollivierre 28’

February 24, 2017
Bequia United 0, Racing FC 4
Estenio Laurent 9’; Bendy Charles 16’; Marckens Dorisca 25’; Jackson Jean 41’ pen

Greenbay Hoppers FC 0, Inter Moengotapoe 2
Stefano Rijssel 47’; Donnegy Fer 82’

Sunday, February 26, 2017
Inter Moengotapoe 4, Bequia United 1
Stefano Rijssel 22’; Jurmen Vallei 65’ pen; Kareem Kwasie 90’, 90’+4 / Mark Brown 39’ pen

Greenbay Hoppers FC 0, Racing FC 2
Bendy Charles 38’; Jamesley Daniel 43’