BYC Withdraws from LFA’s 1st League to Invest in Youth Football

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Monrovia – Liberia’s First Division Club, Barrack Young Controller (BYC), have announced its new five-year plan, which includes directing their focus to youth football.

The club with two separate teams BYC –I and BYC II, on Sunday, July 14, through its official Facebook page disclosed that it is time to invest in youth football.

The release said BYC will not participate in the upcoming 2019/2020 LFA First Division league and appealed to the LFA to remove the clause that prevents BYC II  from being promoted to the First Division League at the end of the next season.

“We believe the future of Liberian football lies in developing today’s junior players whom may take Liberian football to the next level.

“BYC has purchased Ambassador Football Academy, which will be folded into the BYC football program. We have designated the team to be called BYC-A: the “A” will stand for academy,” the BYC’s statement said.

Papie Jones, the former owner of Ambassador, will be the director of BYC – A and joined the BYC football board of directors that’s according to the former Liberian champions. 

About 25 to 30 players are estimated to comprise BYC – A ranging from 7 to 17 years old.

“BYC football has an outstanding agreement with the LFA that its 2nd Division team (BYC -II) cannot be promoted to the LFA’s First Division; though they have all rights to win the 2nd Division. This non-promotional clause remains in effect for the 2019 Season, though it will be requested after the 2019/2020 Season and be eligible for promotion the season after or in 2020/2021. We strongly feel the majority of BYC-II players whom have now been together for the past two years, are poised within the next two years to be the LFA First Division champions.”

“To accomplish all the above, BYC will not field a team in the 1st Division for this upcoming season,” the club wrote the LFA. 

Concerning its players the club noted that  all local contractual players will be paid in full as stipulated by their  individual contract terms, while players who don’t have contracts will be given letter of release to play for any club of their choice locally or internationally.

The technical staff of BYC will remain at the club to help build what the club termed “a new generation of stars” like in the past when Karleo Anderson, Prince Jetoh, Hilton Varney, Mark, Paye, Benjamin  Gbemy  and many players that came through the BYC youth program.

“We have had good successes and the senior team program very accomplished but not enough for our level of expectation or commitment to the performance we desire. It is time we reset, dig deeper, start earlier, to accomplish our goal of getting to the group stage of the CAF competition. We have come close, getting to the round of 32 in 2017, the only Liberian team to do so such but close is not good enough of us. For us to get over this high bar, we’ve realized we have to start younger, hence, our entry into youth football. We want to develop a team, starting with the younger players, keeping them together, for the next 3 to 4 years, and beyond, who will be able to compete with other countries all in Africa who have strong youth/academy programs. Football to us is a journey. We begin a new journey to the goal of a higher level. We are excited and confident our entry into youth football will take BYC and Liberian football to the next level,” the release concluded.

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