Sixth season of Elite League to commence in February
The sixth season of the Elite League is scheduled to start in February and run until June-July, according to Guyana Football Federation’s Director of Competitions, Troy Peters.
In a recent interview, Peters said the League would form part of a busy 2024 for local and international football.
The Federation aims to have the sixth season return to its original format where the ten teams play each other twice, resulting in 18 matches per team.
After the COVID-19 pandemic, season five of the league had nine matches per team, with the Guyana Defence Force FC winning their second title.
Peters also indicated among other tournaments for 2024, there will be a Federation Cup.
In the new season, inaugural champions Slingerz FC, or Berbice’s Mondderlust FC, will join the league, given they are in the final of the promotional playoff.
The bigger prize for Elite League teams would be a chance to compete in the Caribbean Shield tournament.
The CONCACAF Caribbean Shield, also known as the CONCACAF Caribbean Club Shield, is an annual Caribbean football competition for clubs that are members of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU).
Fruta Conquerors is the last team to qualify for the tournament in 2021 but did not attend after it was postponed from its initial period in April owing to concerns over COVID-19.
The Director of Competitions said the opportunity will remain for the league champions, but teams must meet the CONCACAF Club Licensing criteria.
“While you might be the champion team in Guyana, if you don’t have a women’s arm, you don’t have youth division, you don’t have playing facilities of an international standard, that will peg you back from advancing to play in the CONCACAF Shield Cup,” Peters outlined.
The GFF is working with the clubs to reach those requirements, and Peters noted, “In Guyana’s context, we have to strive really hard to get the teams on par with what is happening in the region.”
Following the Elite League Promotional play-off final on January 6, the GFF will award a preparation grant of G$1M to the club or clubs promoted to the Elite League.
The winning club will be promoted to season six of the Elite League, while the runner-up side will also be given a second chance to play in the League when they oppose Victoria Kings, the bottom-placed team from season five.