In preparation for the showdown in Calabar, Nigeria on October 13, Liberia was in Niamey on October 9 to play the Menas of Niger, in a thrilling 4-3 rout. The match played at the Seyni Kountche Stadium in Niamey, reports say, was closely fought with both team expected to do battle this weekend.
In the early minutes, Liberia wasted several opportunities through Zah Krangar and Marcus Macaulay before Niger went on the score as early as the 12th minute through Kanilou Douda. LISCR FC midfielder Marcus Macaulay, however, recovered and leveled the score minutes later, but Niger increase their tally 2-1 through Douda again.
Back from half time, reports say the Lone Star dominated possessions scoring two goals through a header from defender Solomon Wesseh, and another goal from James Soto Roberts. Both goals were however disallowed by local referee Dboul Aziz Hama.
Liberia’s Demark-based Ansu Toure, who replaced injured Patrick Wleh, finally found the net in the 49th minute for the timely equalizer, and five minutes later, Indonesia-based Zah Krangar put Liberia ahead. Krangar has been scoring for Liberia, and remains coach Kaetu Smith’s most valuable striker to date.
Kranger also provided the two goals that sunk the Ghana Black Stars in Monrovia, and also scored the Lone goal that beat the Malawi Flames in Monrovia, just before Liberia met the Eagles.
Playing before their home fans, Niger was able to break the deadlock when they came on strong during the dying embers of the game, scoring again to lead by 4-3 as the final whistle was blown.
Niger will host Guinea, which it lost to by a score of 1-0 in Conakry, about three week ago; while Liberia will travel to Calabar to face the Nigerian Super Eagles. Both teams drew 2-2 at the Monrovia Sports Complex weeks ago in preparation for the Afcons qualifiers.
The match, according to reports was a good one considering that Liberia scored three goals; having previously scored two against Nigeria, two against Black Stars , and three against the Menas of Niger, as the showdown in Calabar approaches for the South Africa 2013 Nations cup finals this weekend. The match in Niamey saw Liberia using its substitute goal keeper, James Galley, who reports say wasn’t in good form.
Meanwhile, missing from the current training camp are Sekou Oliseh, Tonia Tisdell, Solomon Grimes, Boikay Foday and Junior Wilson. They are expected to join the team in Ghana on Wednesday.
The Liberian National team leaves for Nigeria on Thursday, but Nigerian football officials are concerned that Lone Star is yet to inform them when the team is expected to land there.
The full Liberian Squad for the Nigerian match are: Zah Krangar, Patrick Wleh, Solomon Wesseh, Teah Dennis, James Galley, Soto Roberts, Mulbah Urey, Nathaniel Sherman, Martin Karndu, George Gebro (Captain), Trokon Zeon, Isaac Pupo, Marcus Macaulay and Nnusohn Martor They are Alseny Keita, Jimmy Dixon, Tonia Tisdell, Ansu Toure, Boikay Foday, Junior Wilson, Sekou Oliseh, Solomon Grimes, Theo Lewis, and Omega Alamadine.