The Nigerian Super Eagles have already named 11 professionals players in anticipation of a tie with Liberia. Nigeria’s Coach Stephen Keshi left out Chelsea midfielder John Mikel Obi and West Brom striker Peter Odemwingi, two players Nigerians wanted on the team. Keshi faced a tribunal at the NFF to defend his called-up players.
He however called up Ike Uche of Villarreal Spain, Victor Moses of Wigan England, and Ameh Musa of CSKA Moscow amongst others. Uche though, has been a consistent scorer for the Eagles.
There are speculations that Coach Kaetu Smith of the Lone Star plans on excluding Dion Williams, Francis Doe, and Anthony Laffor, three key components that have been with the team for the past seven years. The players were expelled a month ago for disciplinary problem, before the Lone Star traveled to Windhoek to face the Warriors.
Coach Smith and the Lone Star, in preparation for the game against the Super Eagles recently traveled to Central Africa to honor a Fifa August 15 international friendly match.
According to sports analyst Wleh Bedell, Lone Star dominated the match but did not score a goal against Equitorial Guinea. Although the Liberian Football Association is mute on who will be called to camp, Liberia’s best chance against Nigeria will be the game at home in Monrovia, according to football enthusiasts.
Those expected to return to the Lone Star are Nathaniel Sherman, who remains the Lone Star save pair of hands, Solomon Grimes, George Gebro, Sekou Oliseh Jabateh and Teah Dennis. It is speculated that Boikay Foday and Abel Quioh are expected to join the Lone Star.
The match against Equatorial Guinea was Kaetu Smith’s fourth as coach of the Lone Star. Reports say although Liberia lost by 1-0 in Malabo to their host, Lone Star dominated possessions and created a lot of opportunities; but failed to convert. Liberia Lone Star will play the Flames of Malawi on September 5, and the Black Stars of Ghana on September 11, three days after the clash against the Eagles.
There are unconfirmed reports that the Liberia Football Association might release a list of foreign-based professional players, called up for the Afcons tie before the week ends. The Lone Stars are currently in camp undergoing intensive training in preparation for the onslaught that the Nigerian Super Eagles intends to bring to Monrovia.
Ralph Geeplay can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org