Keitrace FC vs. LISCR FC; ELWA United vs. Samira FC
The winner of the knockout league, the FA Cup, of every season represents the country in the continental CAF Confederation Cup that comprises 59 teams. It is Africa’s second club competition – behind the CAF Champions League. In last year’s edition, Liberia was represented by Monrovia Club Breweries, who were knocked out in the preliminaries.
Breweries are no longer among contenders to represent Liberia in next year’s Confederation Cup having dropped out in the quarter finals. The fight to represent Liberia in the upcoming Confederation Cup is just a few days away. Third division side Samira FC will lock horns with ELWA United, while Keitrace FC will go against LISCR FC.
Samira FC, known as the Scoring Scorpions, have proven to be giant killers in the competition. The Scoring Scorpions reached the semifinals after eliminating three top championship sides, including last edition’s finalists, Mighty Barrolle, the Church Boys of Jubilee and title holders Monrovia Club Breweries.
Based on the performances of Samira and ELWA United, many will conclude that the Scoring Scorpions stand a better chance of advancing to the final against the championship relegation threatened United.
United, on the other hand, have also proven to be a better side in the FA Cup, despite dismal performances. The Paynesville based side won their first two matches against 3rd division Freeport FC and 2nd division FC Bea Mountain by 4-0 and 3-0 respectively.
Being in the championship relegation zone with three matches left, ELWA United will be a happier side if they see themselves emerging as knockout champions. Likewise, youthful Samira FC, the FA Cup debutantes, are anxious enough and remain a major contender for the title without fear of the top guns.
Will Samira FC defeat another top gun to advance to the final or will they add up to the list of small guns that have been swept by top guns and relegation threatened United?
The Samira and United match is one side of the FA Cup Semi-finals. Two first division championship clubs, LISCR FC and Keitrace FC, are waiting on the other side. Both teams had great comebacks in their quarter-finals second leg after coming from behind to overturn the scores. After drawing with top rivals FC Fassel in the first leg, LISCR FC’s journey to the FA Cup title could have ended under a heavy downpour after they were down by a goal to the last quarter of the match.
The 15 minutes became just a number after the LISCR completed the comeback and were rescued by striker Christopher Jackson and Robert Mensah in the final 10 minutes.
Keitrace also had a comeback against first division counterparts Nimba United after a comprehensive 3-1 victory over the Mountaineers (Nimba United) following a narrow 1-0 defeat in the first leg.
Though LISCR still remains a contender in the championship – seated in 2nd place – with six points behind the league leaders, the team’s priority has been the FA Cup, according to Coach Tapha Manneh.
Keitrace have lost their status as championship contenders and are hungry for the title. If defeated in this competition, the team will join others who are only fighting to maintain top position on the league table.
The enthusiasm showed by the last four teams cannot be overlooked; for everyone wants to win the domestic title, but only one team will emerge as a winner and will represent Liberia at the CAF Confederation Cup.