The world football governing body – FIFA, has for the fourth time, altered the date of the Liberia-Ivory Coast’s two-tie in the last play-off of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia qualifiers.
The Acting Secretary General of LFA, Emmanuel Deah told the Daily Observer in an exclusive interview yesterday via mobile phone, that FIFA has sanctioned the 13th for the first leg but changed the date of the return-leg from Monday, the 16th of November, to Tuesday, the 17th of November.
The Acting Chief scribe said it is set that Liberia would play host to the Elephants on Friday the 13th and honor her return leg the 17th instead of the previous date, the 16th in Abidjan.
The change in the date has marked the fourth since the progression of the national team against Guinea Bissau on a 4-2 aggregate.
Earlier, it was the 9th and 14th, then the 14th and 16; the 13th and 16th and then the 13th and 17th.
Ivory Coast has appeared thrice in FIFA World Cup and sits 21 in the FIFA Coca Cola ranking while Liberia has never appeared in the World Cup and is 95 in the FIFA ranking.
According to statistics, between 30 June 1965 to 16 June 1995, Liberia and Ivory Coast have met 11 times – four at home and seven away.
The Elephant has whipped the Lone Star in seven matches and forced to a draw in four.
Liberia bowed to Ivory Coast in the four home games, drew four away and also lost three away.
Until 2005, Ivory Coast’s greatest accomplishment was winning the 1992 African Cup of Nations against Ghana on penalties at the Stade Leopold Senghor in Dakar, Senegal.
Their second success came in the 2015 edition, again beating Ghana on penalties at the Estadio de Bata in Bata, Equatorial Guinea.
For Liberia, her best achievement was qualifying for the African Cup of Nations in 1996 and 2001 respectfully but never advanced beyond the group stage.