... After a 1-0 Loss against Cape Verde, Liberia’s chances to qualify are less than slim.
The senior national football team of Liberia further dented their hope of qualifying for the 2022 FIFA World Cup finals on Sunday.
The Lone Star failed to recover from their 2-1 defeat against Cape Verde in the first-leg at the Accra Sports Stadium and succumbed to a 1-0 defeat in the second-leg at the Stadium Aderito Sena in Cape Verde.
Similar to the first-leg, the Islanders scored the match-winner in the 90th minute to collect all three points, courtesy of Ryan Mendes’ lone goal.
Pressured by the result from the first-leg that he assumed responsibility for, Coach Peter Butler made four changes in his starting lineup for the return-leg by replacing goalkeeper Ashley Williams, expelled Jeremy Saygbe, Seth Hellberg, and Van Dave Harmon.
The home side had an early opportunity in the 3rd minute to get the opener, but thanks to goalkeeper Tommy Songo, who was in the right position to deny the goal. With just a minute plus added time left to play, Cape Verde came close to break the deadlock through Vagner’s header that was saved by the crossbar.
The Lone Star had a couple of hair-raising moments that nearly resulted in goals, but were unlucky to hit the back of the net.
The chance came in 51 minutes on the clock when striker Kpah Sherman powered his way through to fire a right-foot strike toward the upper left angle of Cape Verde’s goal post, but the home side’s shot-stopper had his hands in the best position to divert the shot over the crossbar.
The next attempt came as close as to the edge of the six yards box when Ayoubah Kosiah perfectly set up Oscar Dorley in the penalty area, but his low-ground effort was saved by goalkeeper Nuno Borges.
Mendes finally got the match-winner for Cape Verde with a brilliant right-foot strike in the penalty area that goalkeeper Songo and his defenders struggled to clear. The result keeps Liberia at the bottom of Group C with three points and two rounds of games left to play against Nigeria and the Central African Republic.
If Liberia must progress to the next round of the qualifiers, they must win their last two games with not less than three goals margin and hope that none of their group opponents secure a win in their remaining games, a target that is humanly unachievable for the Lone Star.