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Liberia 2 Vs Nigeria 2
Player Ratings

It was a thrilling duel between football nemesis Liberia Lone Star and Nigeria Super Eagles in a match that was highly intriguing. With the hosts taking the lead in a very astonishing manner, the visitors replied with two goals in the first half before the hosts got the leveler to mark a pulsating encounter, But, how did he players on both sides far in the weighty duel of the first leg tie, final round of the qualifier is what is brought to you.

Liberia



By Wleh Bedell
bedellblessing@yahoo.com
+231886106293


Nathaniel Sherman: The Roots FC custodian once more proved to be a reliable shot stopper. He conceded two goals though, but was in no way his fault, and in fact he even saved the first, but the rebound could not be cleared by any of his playmates as the opponents got the equalizer. The lad would later deny the deadly Ikwechukwu Uche twice, the first by parrying a belter and the second by bravely saving a very close effort. He must however work on his kicking ability as he was not too convincing in that since his balls like goal kicks or clearances in dealing with a pass-back did not cover longer distances. But, in all his spirited effort was one reason the Lone Star did not lose the contest.Rating: 7.0

Solomon Grimes: The pin-sized full back never ventured forward as he was mainly keen on holding his position instead of being positive by making rapid over lapping runs. The man from Cypriot club Nea Salimana was not at a heroic form and did not add much to his side in many aspects. He was however able to break out a host of threats in disturbing the opposition for making in-roads from the innocuous wide play.Rating: 5.0

George Gebro: The Invincible Eleven (IE) rugged full back lived to his status as being a no nonsense defender. In his very first challenge, he met Chelsea’s Victor Moses with much aggression as the winger fell on the surface and cried for help to the contentment of the home crowd. This was mainly intended to quiet the ex-Wigan man who was still ominous as he won a penalty from the same position. Gebro was very effective as he made some runs down the channel and provided a plethora of diagonal crosses. He was also a very difficult opponent to get by and had a pretty good game.Rating: 7.5

Omega Roberts Alamidine: The FK Smederevo center back was a sham as his performance was floppy. Besides feverishly combining with Gebro to upend Moses for the penalty, he lacked ball stability, confidence and solidity. An injury led him to be substituted though, but his staying on the park would have caused more trouble for his side as he was surplus to requirements. However the lanky center back was exposed since he was not the right pair with Jimmy. Both players are white-collar-like defenders who will always need a stopper to enable them collect the pieces. He was this time required to go first to engage which exposed him as he and Jimmy’s pair was a complete duplication. Only his aerial ability to some extent was something to remember.Rating: 4.5

Jimmy Dixon: The experienced campaigner who has returned to Sweden side BK Hacken did not put up a solid display as he was often beaten for pace and power. He tried though to compete, but the tormenting duo of Uche and Eminike made life unbearable for him. Probably with two holding players and another stopper he would have being more protected and was just going to collect the lose balls, a position or act he loves. He managed to control his back four though, but was not the most reliable of performers. Rating: 6.0

Alseny Keita: There was much work load on the US Monasaart of France holding player. With just one holding midfielder and not many harder workers on the park, the player had too much to do defensively as he had to wrestle for the ball, break up threats and keeping reins on so many opponents. He toiled and fought in serving as a shield for the back four.
Rating: 7.0

Isaac Zola Pupo: The lanky playmaker was the master card performer or man of the match. His flick cum incisive passes, telling balls and orchestrating in swinging corners made him a handful for the two times African champions. However, he stand accuse of not giving much through balls on the floor which would have set his playmates for goal, but the aerial balls made life difficult for them as the towering Nigerian defenders easily dealt with them. Generally, he had a rewarding game and was a delight to watch. It was the Oilers man assist that led to the curtain raiser and was effective.Rating: 8.5

Sekou Jabateh Oliseh: In the first half, the CSKA Moscow winger was in slumber and could not ignite anything special. He gave a suicidal pass back that was gleefully received by Victor Moses who was later fouled for the penalty. But, in the second half, Sekou raised his game especially with the goal which was beautifully executed. He also had balls in some key positions, but his decisions let him down as his crosses were comfortably saved by a lackluster Enyeama. He was also not involved into defensive action as he did not show willingness to recover when his side was without the ball. Rating: 6.0

Tonia Tisdell: Many called the Turkish club Saliufaspor winger “the Liberian Messi” as his quick pace, mesmerizing dribbles and over all flair made life very difficult for Stephen keshi’s side. The lad was quite a problem for the Nigerians and his goal in the early stages further compounded their frustration. His apparent weakness however was his inability to track back when his side was on the front foot which mostly made his wing partners Gebro to be affected by the Nigerians numerical superiority. He ran out of steam though, but, it took too long for him to be substituted.Rating: 8.0

Edward Junior Wilson: Strong, bullish but mostly quiet. The Indonesian club Semen Padang hit-man showed strength and power. This was especially when the ball was at his feet as he took on opponents. But he lacked mobility which made him partly ineffective. His movement would have helped his side greatly as he would have carried defenders away from the goal area to create room for advanced players.Rating: 5.5

Zah Rahan Krangar: Playing as a second striker the Indonesian club Persipura danger man took long to get into the game. It was mainly at wide areas when he switched flanks with Jabateh who would then be misplaced that he had a say in the game. Despite his diminutive size he was lethal and caused problems for Yobo and co. His skills were eye-stretching and recovery runs fantastic. He almost scored but was unlucky as his effort landed on the woodwork and then to the goalie who had being beaten. The player would later provide the assist for the equalizer and had a fruitful game.Rating: 7.5

Substitutes:


Teah Dennis, Jr. Coming on for a sterile Omega Roberts Alamadine during the dying ambers of the first stanza, the Barrack Young Controllers (BYC) rearguard helped stabilize the defense as he showed his worth. Overlooked mainly because he is a local, the lad set the record straight as his ferocious tackles; lithe marking and whole hearted approach helped his side a lot.Rating: 7.0

Eddie Boikai Foday:
Coming on as a second half substitute for Edward Junior Wilson, the Persiwa Mena striker added a new dimension to his side attack as he had the aerial ability to challenge the towering opponents and as well made a host of intelligent moves to extricate himself in getting a ball. He also dropped when there was a set piece against his side as he tormenting the opponents in the air.Rating: 6.0

James Soto Roberts:
Though the Oilers man came on rather late due to a belated substitution in place of a tired Tonia Tisdell, he proved ineffective as he could not make an impact into the fray. He misapplied technique as he squandered possession.Rating: 4.5

Nigeria:



Vincent Eyeami: The French club Lille goaltender who is on loan at Israeli club Meccabi Telaviv was a complete disappointment and showed he is match rusty since he warmed the bench the whole of last season in France. He was lackluster and was the cause of both goals by the Lone Star. He was not agile, lacked the quickness off his line and lacked the usual confidence and commanding nature. The only thing he could be remembered was that he tried starting play from the back.Rating: 5.0

Juwon Oshaniwa: Not much was seen from the Sharks FC full back as he did not venture forward much and was often dribbled by the mostly skillful Lone Star wideman. He did not put up a solid performance.Rating: 5.5

Godfrey Itama Oboabona: The Sun Shine Stars player proved solid from the onset as he won a host of tackles and made some forward runs, but as the game progressed he lost concentration and was often bewildered. Also, he was outnumbered on some occasions.
Rating: 6.0

Emmanuel Azubike Egwuekwe: A very solid performer in central defense. He won the 50-50 balls and proved a very steady member of the back four. The Warri Wolves center back nearly got a goal from a corner as the looping ball fell right before him in the opponents’ goal mouth, but he surprisingly blew it over the bar and knocked the ground in frustration.Rating: 8.0

Joseph Yobo: At age 32 and wearing his 88th cap the Turkish club Fernabache man was not at his commanding best. He was mostly useful in the air but struggle for pace the rare times he was called to duty. Due to fatigue and the lack of nothing more to give, the former Everton man had to be substituted.Rating: 6.5

Nwanko Obiora: The ex-Inter Milan youngster was a very effective performer as he sprayed the passes and kept his composure. He made several cleverly measured passes and was an asset for his side.Rating: 8.0

Igiebor NosaKharee: The Spanish club Real Betis jammer was very mobile, influential and hardworking. He covered lots of grounds and made the team have balance. His goal marked his side equalizer and made several strong runs in the final third.Rating: 7.5

Victor Moses: No wonder why European club champions Chelsea splashed mega millions on him. On the day, the former Wigan man was potent as he weaved through opponents and even caused a penalty. He recovered quickly and was very business minded. Had to be substituted due to knock he received all over.Rating: 8.0

Christantus Uzoenyi Ejike: A very pacey winger who had a good game. His speed and work ethic helped his side in the tussle, but at time stood accused of spending much time on the ball to show off with his strength.Rating: 7.5

Ukwechukwu Uche: The Villareal man on loan at Granada CF finished the penalty, but could have scored two clearer cut chances. It was a surprise that a player of his caliber could not bury such glaring chances. Overall, he was a handful to the Lone Star defense as his pace and power was his weapons.Rating: 5.5

Emmanuel Eminike: By his standard the man from Spartak Moscow had a very uninspiring game. It was a surprise that he played the full 90 minutes. He was a tower of strength though and won some set pieces, but he rarely got a shot on goal.Rating: 6.0
 

Substitutes

Ahmed Musa: The man from CSKA Moscow was introduced rather later but still made an impact as his combination with speed and skills and tee up Uche for what should have being a goal.Rating: 5.5

Efee Ambrose: The Celtic defender came on as a rescue to the Nigerian defense since its leader Joseph Yobo seemed hapless in the latter stages. Replacing Yobo, he had to ensure they protect a tiring defense and a shaky goalkeeper as the match ended 2-2. Rating: 6.0

 

 

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