The Liberian national football team Lone Stars has begun training in Monrovia as the team gets ready to face Togo in preparation of the Afcons. Newly appointed coach James Debbah for the Lone Stars has said his team will play “attractive and effective” football. The coach has announced that 25 out of the 40 called-up local players would make the team for the joint 2017 AFCON and 2016 CHAN qualifiers.
According to the 2017 AFCON Group A fixture, Liberia will play six games, home and away, against Togo, Tunisia and Djibouti.
The Lone Stars have an unenviable record against Togo and Tunisia past face-offs. Liberia and Djibouti will be squaring off for the first time in the afcons.
The Liberian national team went twice to the Africa Cup of Nations [afcons], 1996 and 2002 never going beyond the group stage, even with legend George Weah and James Debbah in the fold. The appointment of James Debbah has met stern criticisms from sport journalists, because he was hand picked. His critics also say he has called up players who are not playing regularly in their teams including George Weah Jr. whose career has failed to take off, despite the illustrious career of his father.
Foreign Based Players
George Weah, Jr., Abel Gebor, and Joel Alajarin. Alex Nimely of Port Vale, Anaki Williams of Athletic Bilbao and Joel Johnson Alajarin of Real Jean; William Jerbo of Rio Ave, Abel Gebor of FC Honka ,captain Anthony Snothi Laffor of Mamelodi Sundowns. Sekou Jabateh-Oliseh of CSKA Moscow, Sam Johnson of Djurgarden IF and Amadaiya Rennie of Hammarby, Teah Dennis of Al Ahli SC, Patrick Gerhardt-Nyemah of Sarawak and Zah Kranger and Edward Junior Wilson of Felda.
Gizzie Dorbor of Hapoel Afula, Chassimou Sow of Crystal Palace, Adolphus Marshall of PS Bangka, Tonia Tisdell of Osmanlispor, Melvin King of Goldfields, and Sekou Konneh of Fortuna Sittard in Holland.
40 local Based Players
Nathaniel Sherman of BYC, Tommy Sango of LISCR FC, Sekou Bayoh of Mighty Barrolle, Foumalu Kamara of LPRC Oilers and Sampson Giddings of FC Fassell.
Alvin Polo of Jubilee FC, Carlos Williams of Watanga FC, Aloysius Simujlah of FC Fassell, Trokon Zeon and Friday Bestman of LISCR; Prince Kennedy and Abubakar Dunnoh of BYC II; Nuwu Johnson and Myers Garlo of LPRC Oilers and Alpha James, Alvin McCornel, Prince Jetoh and Hilton Varney of BYC. The midfielders include Amara Sackor, Gideon Williams and Abraham Coker of BYC; Queejay Contineta of LPRC Oilers, Abraham Barshall of LISCR FC, Theo Nimely of Jubilee FC, Oscar Dolley of Monrovia Club Breweries and Alphonso Jenkins of Watanga.
Sholee ‘Deco’ Quiah of Invincible Eleven, Sunnyboy Dolo of Nimba United, Leon Power and Abraham Kuyateh of Watanga FC; James Soto Roberts and Prince Gormiah of LPRC Oilers; Zair David, Bunnor Kandakai and Stanley Whitfield of Jubilee FC; Molley Gray, Van Dame Harmon, Chris Momo, Lamine Jabateh and Prince Saydee of BYC.
James Debbah has no coaching experience prior to being appointed coach of the Liberian national team, the Lone Stars. He told UNMIL Radio in Monrovia that he hopes to replicate his success on the playing pitch as he now enters into coaching arena, but it remains to be seen just yet if he has the tactical discipline and the coaching abilities to score a few points and win over his critics. No friendlies for the team has been announced. Francis Doe and Patrick Wleh were over looked. Surprise entries include Inaki Williams who plays for Atletico Bilbao in the Spanish league. Williams and Rio Aves Ironman William Jerbo could be stables in Coach Debbah’s plans as he battle Togo in less than a month in Lome.