Terminix La Horquetta Rangers' opening match of the Ascension Invitational Football League will take place on August 10 with much fanfare at its spanking new facility at Phase Two, La Horquetta, Arima.
After more than $5 million spent to date, the once dilapidated pavilion situated behind the La Horquetta Police Station, has been transformed into a semi state-of-the-art facility, comprising a mini restaurant, an extended seating capacity that measures 120 x 50 feet, commentary booths, four dressing rooms and toilets, water tanks with pumps, laser-turf ground and a facility that has been totally fenced.
On Wednesday, the director at La Horquetta Rangers Richard Ferguson said a total of $450,000 was spent on the ground alone, and another $435,000 on lighting facilities. The key he said is to bring football back to the community, which will eventually lead to more support for the sport and a better professional football League in the future.
La Horquetta Rangers is the only team in the new Ascension League that is yet to play its first match. But according to Ferguson, next week's opening match is set to provide fans with a show of culture and football.
In addition to their encounter with Matura Re-United, fans will be treated to live performances from soca artistes Blaxx, Orlando Octave and Isasha, all for $40. And there will also be food and drink from a well-stocked restaurant.
Ferguson noted his club has gone the extra mile in attempting to return football to the glory days. "When you mix the football with the T&T culture, you will get the support of the fans, as it is what T&T people can identify with. More support will lead to an improvement in the quality of the game, and eventually a professional system where players will be paid, and the sport will not have to go cap-in-hand to the government for funding," Ferguson explained.
Ferguson praised the sponsors of the Ascension League for providing players with the opportunity to play the sport.
He admitted his team has also strengthened their force this season by recruiting a few players. He said, "In the past, Rangers has occupied the bottom half of the table, but I think we will do better this year."