Barrolle in ‘Group of Death’

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The ‘Group of Death’ is what every coach of the eight top teams, has nightmare about leading to yesterday’s draw.

Though, the outbreak of the deadly Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) has made many players rusty there are still inarguably strong competitors, who against the odds are set to boom.

For the 2015 Coca-Cola Top 8 Tournament of Group A, Mighty Barrolle, the only 2nd division outfit, has been paired with three strong-willed 1st division clubs – BYC I, LISCR FC and Nimba United.

Honestly, it’s inarguable that former football champions, known as the Kanyan Pepper Boys or the Rollers are completely safe amongst the recent three giants, in the Group of Death.

According to the Wikipedia, a group of death in a multi-stage tournament is a group, which is unusually competitive, because the number of strong competitors in the group is greater than the number of qualifying places available for the next phase of the tournament. Thus, in the group phase, one or more strong competitors in the "group of death" will necessarily be eliminated, who would otherwise have been expected to progress further in the tournament.

Let's examine the strength of each in the 8-day’s tournament to fight for the Coca-Cola Cup and US$2,000 and US$1,000 respectively.

For BYC I, it’s viewed as the country’s best team and one of the tournament's top contenders.

The tough draw isn't enough to change BYC I’s elite status and would be one of the two teams to qualify from the group stage.

LISCR FC is one of the favorites in Group A because the Gardnersville team has enough talent to make a serious push to advance, regardless of their three years of title drought.

Newly 1st division promoted side Nimba United would have every right to be angry to prove ‘supremacy’ after being relegated to 2nd grade and its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) still undergoing two years’ suspension for administrative reasons.

However, there's a possible probability of Nimba United finding themselves in a hole with the likes of BYC and LISCR in their group – but there’s also a possibility that best teams don’t always win.

The Rollers are beyond doubt out of contention but it will be a crucial 180 minutes’ experience for them to rub booths against their division’s mates with the rumor that the Red Boys are contemplating on taking advantage of an empty seat in the first division.

Group B also attracts a lot of attention because of the likes of FC Fassell, IE, NPA Anchors and Aries FC.

The 2013/2014 knockout champion, FC Fassell is the favorite to climb from the group. They are hardly a settled team right now, but it's for a pretty envious reason: they have too many talent players. Coach Matthew Jalutweh has to figure out which of his previous cream of players are better than his recently signed players, and if he sorts them out correctly, FC Fassell would have no problem.

But if he fails to blend the “old and the new players,” NPA Anchors and Aries have the propensity to make-up of opportunities and pull out fantastic performances.

Truly, no side is completely safe in Group A, although FC Fassell would be favored to advance. All of the four teams have virtual youthful and determined players therefore any blunder from a team can deal an immediate blow.

According to the fixture, BYC will host Nimba United in the opener and LISCR FC meets Mighty Barrolle.

On Saturday, FC Fassell will meet NPA Anchors and IE and Aries would engage one another. All games begin at 2:00pm.

The first round of the tournament is a round robin, while finals are knockout.

IE resurfaced in the tournament when Watanga FC dropped.

The Secretary General and Administrative Manager of Watanga, Yudu Miller said the team would only be prepared for the national football league, which is expected to kick off May 13.



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