Liberia champions Barrack Young Controllers (BYC) were on Sunday defeated by South Africa’s SuperSport United 5-0 (6-1 on Aggregate) in the second leg of the CAF Confederation Cup playoff that marked their exit from the continental competition.
BYC got the opportunity to feature in the playoff of the Confederation Cup after they were knocked out during the first round of the CAF Champions League by Mozambican side Ferroviario De Beira, on March 19, on post match penalties (6-3 on aggregate).
Before their exit from the CAF Confederation Cup, the Go Blue Boys were invited to participate in the West African Football Union’s (WAFU) Four Champions Tournament in Dakar, Senegal where they were defeated in two matches and finished last.
During the team’s participation in those competitions, there was not a single report from players or the technical arm of the team about any failure of the club’s administration as it relates to international travel and the provision of the needed logistics for matches, among others.
The team’s administration through club president Sekou Konneh during pre-match press conferences always repeated that “administratively, we have done everything possible for the team and it is now up to the technical department and the players.”
The technical department of the team, headed by Coach Cooper Sannah, affirmed the level of support from the administration and always said that the technical mechanism was in place to get the best results; unfortunately, the expected results were not secured.
The technical systems that were put in place by Coach Sannah only yielded results when it comes to the team’s control of ball possession, which did not produce the best results.
On the other hand, the players, who are the final implementers, did their best in those battles; but in such battles, there were no prizes for runners-up – which were not the results that their supporters expected.
Scoring ability, which is not only limited to BYC, remains a major challenge for Liberian players, both in domestic and international matches.
It is about time that the players themselves take some responsibility for the outcome of these matches rather than the technical staff taking the burden for such results.
However, it is also about time that the technical staff or trainers go beyond physical fitness by sharing the players among themselves during practice sessions and focusing on their finishing touches that would bring out the best result in any football match.
Additionally, this should also serve as a lesson to other clubs who may have similar opportunities to participate in international competitions.