It was a game of equals. It was a game of historic proportions and after grueling more than 90 minutes of total football that showcased the best in Liberian County Football, the gods of Nimba County earned their rightful place and sent their counterparts in Lofa County to tears.
The incredible scores of 3-0 against Lofa County, who until yesterday’s crucial match of the superiors, had done incredible well in the tournament, was received by residents of Voinjama, Zorzor, Fissibu, Kolahun, Kailahun, Vahum, Ndamu, Baziwein, Yealla and other towns did not believe what was happening.
Repeated questions of what was happening to their sons against Mount Nimba could not be unraveled, especially so after the first half had shown their children’s superiority minus the ability to get the goals.
At the end of the first half, when an elder in Yealla wanted to find out from a team of elders why their sons were finding it difficult to put the ball into the net of their opponents, the weather turned black, like the face of a boy who has lost his mother.
But were the elders of Mount Nimba just waiting just like that? The second half that made a great difference proved that Mount Nimba was excitedly awake and doing wonders, especially so when the goals began to come.
When the first of the three goals entered the net of Lofa County, jubilation broke out among the residents of Ganta, Saclepea, Buutuo, Sanniquellie, Yekepa, and among numerous towns, and villages.
And so when goal number two came and Lofa County’s Cole Bangalu was seeking answers from heaven, Nimba County Sports Chairman Tomah Floyd was full of toothpaste smiles and congratulating himself for a well-executed plot against their brothers from Lofa.
But if events thereafter, particularly when the weather cleared for Mount Nimba to complete their 3-0 victory, it became evident that Nimba County’s fate was sealed and Lofa County could not hold themselves together. “The center could no longer hold,” was a refrain that was heard in Zorzor.
As the minutes ticked away and truth be told when it became clear that the die was cast, the talking drums and other traditional instruments were brought from their various places and jubilation began from Ganta, Saclepea, Yekepa and to the most distant part of Nimba County, including towns and villages near the borders with Guinea and La Cote d’Ivoire.
And of course the elders knew that the battle was not over, for the semi-finals and finals are still away and therefore they would have to wait till the final game was won.
But for the meantime, congratulations poured in from all around, telling the boys that they have done well and must look forward and must be able to ensure that the trophy goes to Nimba Mountains.
Meanwhile, Margibi defeated defending champions Grand Bassa County 1-0 in the first game yesterday at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium.