Monrovia – It was another disappointing day for Liberian football lovers who took their time on a Monday evening to watch their national team in action at home against Equatorial Guinea, but it turned out to be business as usual for Lone Star, who lost to the away side.
By: Christopher C.Walker [email protected] 0777898224
The Liberia national football team went into the match hoping to secure a win after their shocking 1-0 defeat to Malawi on Friday in the World Cup qualifier group stage match, but things didn’t go as planned, leaving Lone Star to lose again 1-0 at the hands of Equatorial Guinea.
The visitors took an early lead in the 8th minute with a header from a cross that beat Liberia keeper Ashley Williams. Lone Star, whom many thought could have had a more aggressive approach to the game, started the match slowly as they struggled to bounce back from their defeat to Malawi.
Ledlum brought life to the stadium in the 12th minute, but his cross could not find anyone in the box for a one-touch tip-in. Lone Star missed a free header moments later as Sampson Dweh headed the ball at the side net in the 35th minute, and later, Ledlum’s shot traveled wide.
With the fans calling for a goal, Murphy Oscar Dorley missed a close-range shot after he was set up by team captain William Jebor in the 41st minute. The visitors, Equatorial Guinea, missed a clear opportunity, to the disbelief of their technical staff, in the closing stages of the first half.
In the 44th minute, Liberia was reduced to ten men after Noah Kenneth picked up his second yellow of the evening. As the first half ended, it was Equatorial Guinea 1, Liberia 0.
Back from the break, Second Liberia took the game to the visitors as they controlled possession, pushing the visitors into their own half. In the 56th minute, Macauley’s cross was saved as Jebor was far from the target area.
Equatorial Guinea came close to increasing their lead, but Sampson Dweh was in the right place to intercept the ball for a corner. Substitute Abu Kamara’s shot rolled far from goal after a link-up play with Oscar and Divine Roosevelt Teah.
Lone Star’s deputy coach, Cooper Sannah, made five substitutions in the second half, bringing on Tonia Tisdell, Jamal Arago, Divine Teah, Abu Kamara, and Daniel Toe, who brought stability to the team but found it hard to get the equalizer.
Tonia Tisdell had a golden opportunity after a magical dribbling on the touchline, but he was selfish as he played the ball into the side net when he had three teammates in front of the goal in the 88th minute.
Abu Kamara had the final opportunity of the match to seal a point for Liberia, but his footwork let him down as Liberia continues the search for the first win at the artificial turf of the Samuel Kanyon Doe Sports Complex. Liberia, however, remains at the bottom of the group with no points after two home matches.
Prior to the match, the national team coach was asked to stay away from the game because of his own safety. The decision was made by the LFA technical Committee on Saturday following hours of meetings with Keita and his technical staff.
According to the Committee, which comprised Ivan Browne, Anthony Laffor, Roselyn Konneh, and others, football stakeholders, their decision was the result of threats on Keita’s life by fans after Friday’s disappointing 1-0 defeat at home to Malawi.
The angry fans disrupted the post-match press conference, saying they were tired of Keita as the head coach of the Liberia National Football team because of his poor run of results. Keita is yet to win a game with the national team since taking over from Peter Butler in January.
What is more disappointing is that at home, Keita lost all three games played against Senegal in the African National Championship, South Africa in the AFCON qualifier, and Malawi in the World Cup qualifiers.
Our source reveals that the Committee suggested that Thomas Kojo take charge of the national team, but Keita refused and insisted that his deputy, Cooper Sannah, take charge of the team for today’s match against Equatorial Guinea.
Keita, however, prior to the Malawi game, invited Kojo to help him technically, but now, to oversee the team, he is afraid that Kojo could perform well and could be given the team.