Liberia: Nimba County Win Record 6th County Meet Title
.... The final in a nutshell was Sieh vs Tarpeh. The latter is regarded as one of the finest to ever play the county league in its modern era, while the former, who is a student-athlete of LEAD Monrovia Football Academy continues to add to his impressive soccer pedigree as one of the country's best upcoming talents.
Fate works sometimes. So was the case of Nimba County who after losing their first game in the group stage of the county league to Lofa County, had to depend on the same country to defeat Bomi to advance to the knockout round.
Not only would Nimba advance, but it also kept winning, setting a rematch with Lofa, who was now in search of the second County League trophy.
The Wologozi boys had only won the National County Sports Meet, which was established more than five decades ago, on one occasion and that was in 2021 when they defeated Montserrado County in a 3-1 victory.
This time however they were up against Nimba, the defending Champion, and the tournament's favorites. That did not scare Lofa, who started the match with aggressiveness and relentless attacks, creating dangerous attempts on goal.
The attack paid off midway through the first half with a beautiful header goal from Pascal Harris. And for almost 25 minutes, Nimba who looked so dominant all tournament struggled to find the rhythm, cohesion, and energy it had showcased from the knock stage.
There was no doubt who would win the game from the way Nimba was playing. They were at their lowest at that movement, which makes many wonder if the game was over already before the 90 minutes.
But somehow, Nimba found the rhythm that took them to the final and in succession, they scored two, coming from a goal down to win the first half by a margin of 2-1 -- thanks to Emmanuel Sieh’s two goals.
Sieh, who was named the tournament MVP had little to show for nearly 25 minutes of the first half, considering the fact that he shined throughout the tournament.
The final in a nutshell was Sieh vs Tarpeh ,right
So a lot was expected from him and when he went silent for that long, it was thought that Lofa's defenders had finally discovered a technique to keep the man who would be named the tournament's best player out of the match.
But out of the blue, he proved his brilliance, scoring the first goal that leveled the march in the first half. All along, Nimba had been muted and quiet. But Sieh's electric performance change the game's energy for Nimba who was now showing some life.
The fans cheered. Then, a few minutes before the end of half-time, Sieh did the unbelievable. He buys his time and when the opportunity came, he rises to the height of a flying ball from a corner kick to score a perfect header that changes the course of the game for good.
His run and timing were perfect for that of an elite player. He caught the Lofa defenders and the goalkeeper off guard.
This is the Nimba team everyone expected to see in the championship and that of Sieh, who is now being regarded as one of the finest young players to ever play in the County Sports league.
And in the second half, Nimba increased their lead to 3-1 in the 54th minute -- thanks to Marlu Johnson's goal. But Lofa fought back after Johnson's goal, which paid off with a penalty goal from James Tarpeh, who won the tournament with the county.
Tarpeh, who won the highest goal scorer awards, created a penalty and converted as well; thereby putting pressure on Nimba for an equalizer which never came.
They however thought they had one in the 80s minutes but the goal was ruled out for outsides.
Both sides then battled in the waning minutes, ending 3-2 in favor of Nimba County despite all the amazing skills from Tarpeh who was the star player for Lofa and a constant threat in the flesh of Nimba defenders who found it hard to stop him.
In all fairness, the 2022/20233 National County Sports leagues belong to Nimba County which has now recorded six trophies and is the first county to win the football tournament back-to-back three times.
The final in a nutshell was Sieh vs Tarpeh. The latter is regarded as one of the finest to ever play the county league in its modern era, while the former, who is a student-athlete of LEAD Monrovia Football Academy continues to add to his impressive soccer pedigree as one of the country's best upcoming talents.
Meanwhile, there is still cause for celebration for the Lofians. They defeated Nimba County 2-0 in the championship game to retain their kickball title.
While Margibi defeated Bong County 4-2 to earn the bronze medal earlier before the Final ever got underway.
Sinoe County defeated Montserrado County by a slim margin of 66-64 to win the Basketball category.