To play above themselves today against Congo
Whether anybody likes it or not, the national soccer team, Lone Star, deserve victory today against their Congolese counterparts from Brazzaville.
In their first leg in Brazzaville on Saturday, October 11, Lone Star’s defense did not cover their territory enough as the Congolese took advantage of their defensive weakness to score two goals that increased their tally to 3-1.
The Congolese, who are already in the country, are here for one thing: to defend and ensure that they are undefeated in today’s return-leg at the Samuel Kanyon Doe Sports Complex.
Of course, the national team players are aware that winning today’s game can be a sure bet to improve the team’s chances and even prepare them for a great game against Zimbabwe at the weekend in Monrovia.
Every coach is aware that losing as much as 3-1 to a team has a psychological effect on your players as the same opponents line up for the return leg. Admittedly, the national team players may have congratulated themselves about the Brazzaville debacle and convinced themselves that their loss was the nature of the game.
Hence they accepted the 3-1 as a result that they could not have prevented. However, leading the first leg 3-1, the Congolese are in Liberia to ensure a good defense of their victory.
Playing at a different field and a different time, they may not be well-prepared to defend their victory on a foreign land. But that can only change if the Liberian team can regain their composure and play their game with calculation. The second leg today must be approached with a proper strategy, with the aim of scoring at least some goals.
In their last match, the only difference was the Congolese ability to make use of their set-pieces (free kicks). In that match, the Liberian defense, as usual, exhibited some fatigue. They deliberately allowed a porous defense that could not respond to their mistakes.
For example, the third goal came after a Lone Star defender held a Congolese striker who beat him on the run but later could not put up a defense when the ball was lobbed across their goal-line.
As the Congolese striker soared above his Liberian defenders and put his head hard on the ball, two Liberian defenders just watched the action, as the ball beat goalkeeper Tommy Songo for such a cheap goal.
Today’s game should introduce a new style by the Lone Star, because they are playing at home and will get the support of thousands of supporters. As we have already stated, going to AFCON 2019 would be possible if the players show a great deal of dedication to the assignment they have on hand and win this game. True, there should be no more excuses!
Good Luck Lone Star!