What Chances for BYC, Red Lions against Kotoko, Cantanhez?

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There is no argument that officials and players of Barrack Young Controllers are not sincerely happy of the team’s recent performance in the national soccer league.

The reason is that BYC, the Liberian champions are set to leave the country on February 5, to honor their first leg CAF Cup Championship match against Ghana’s Asante Kotoko at the Baba Yara Sports Stadium in Kumasi.

The Baba Yara Sports Stadium is Kotoko’s home-ground and the city of Kumasi is the home of the team.

This means that Kumasi and its stadium are favorite places for Kotoko. The team is sometimes referred to as Kumasi Asante Kotoko. And like their traditional rivals, Hearts of Oak, is also known as Accra Hearts of Oak, since Accra is its home ground.

It is no joke that Kotoko is taking the competition with all seriousness.

For example, reports from Ghana indicate that at least eight players from Kotoko formed part of the Black Stars that reached the finals of the just ended 2014 CAF CHAN competition in South Africa.

How prepared is BYC against Kotoko in Kumasi on February 9? A closer look at the team’s league matches is not encouraging, if that is the yardstick to measure the team’s seriousness.

The team has played three recent matches, losing one, drawing one and winning one, none proving their preparedness for their match a team like Kotoko.

The team’s 1-1 draw against Jubilee FC, and its victory 2-1 over Watanga last Sunday showed poor marksmanship. BYC has not put up any impressive performance in three matches. Can they change the tune and make a difference against a determined side like Kotoko?

Does it make sense to wonder about what could happen in Kumasi on Sunday, February 9?

It is absolutely unfair to pitch a poorly prepared team against one that is determined to reach the stars. Don’t accuse me of making a doomed prediction against BYC.

Soccer competition survives on adequate preparation and I am not impressed with the team’s league performances, which should indicate their preparedness against any team outside Liberia, let alone Kotoko of Ghana.

Except some miracles fall in favor of BYC, I am not sure the team’s coaches will still have their jobs, the day after February 9.

The next problem is the chances of Red Lions against Equatorial Guinea’s Estrela Cantanhez.

True, not many of us have heard of the exploits of Cantanhez, but qualifying for a CAF tournament means they have something to offer their countrymen.

Now playing their first leg at home, one would think that Red Lions have prepared well and winning their league matches.

A look at the Cellcom LFA League shows that Red Lions are dancing on the relegation zone.

Red Lions have not shown any impressive and determined performance against any local team, let alone a foreign team and as a result there are more questions about what could happen in Monrovia on February 9.

This conclusion should not surprise you, since the team is struggling to maintain a respectable position on the league.

The two representatives must challenge themselves to play more than expected, if they are able to ensure favorable representations.

Perhaps our two representatives can prove me wrong by playing above themselves to assure Liberian soccer fans that Liberian football is not dead.

At least Cellcom has done enough and it is time for our club representatives to do their best, which means winning their matches against their opponents on February 9.


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