By Boy Dolo
As Liberia prepares to battle Zimbabwe in the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers, the search for players with converted pedigree has begun for Head Coach James Debbah.
The Mighty Barrolle Legend nearly took Liberia to her third Nations Cup in 2017, but missed out following a 2-2 draw against Togo at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium in Central Monrovia.
Debbah will begin another journey on the 11th of June away to Zimbabwe and the kind of players needed for that crucial encounter is the issue bugging most Liberians with nearly 19 days to face the Warriors.
If Debbah will definitely need a strong side to face the Warriors who just returned from the 2017 Nations Cup in Gabon, one of such players that is needed in the squad is the versatile Patrick Gerhardt.
The experience Liberian international can function very well as a central defender and defensive midfielder.
Gerhardt played a pivotal role in helping Liberian finished third in the group stage of the 2017 Nations Cup qualifier with his spectacular assist for Francis Doe against Tunisia setting the pace for the Nation.
At just 31, Gerhardt still has plenty to offer after a professional career that spans six nations.
With Alseny Keita not really involved in active football couple with age problem and only Theo Weeks to depend on as natural defensive midfielder,Gerhardt can as well fill in the void.
He currently plays for Melbourne Knights who competes in the Australian Victorian National Premier League competition.
The defender last played in Australia for A-League side Melbourne Heart between 2012-2014.
The Swiss-born Liberian national started his career at Young Boys, earning selection in Switzerland’s national under 15 and under 16 sides.
After loan stints and unable to cement a first team place at Young Boys he made his first move abroad, signing with Romanian club CS Otopeni.
His next move was to Canada in 2010, joining Brantford Galaxy, a club he helped earn Canadian League honours.
A season later he signed with Bosnian club Željezničar Sarajevo, where Gerhardt enjoyed considerable success, winning league and cup honours along with Champions League qualification.
It was also in 2011 where he switched allegiances to Liberia, making a debut in an Africa Cup of Nations qualification match against Cape Verde, where he has since gone on to make four national appearances.
In 2012, Gerhardt was lured by Melbourne Heart FC. The going was tougher in Australia but he did make 40 league appearances for one goal before departing in 2014.