Debbah slams Local League
-Says it’s by far substandard
By Boy Dolo
The Lone Star Head Coach says the Liberia Football Association (LFA) National League is by far substandard for the selection of players for senior National Team engagements.
James Debbah has told a news conference in Monrovia that he can’t leave out players plying their trade in Europe and other part of the World for those playing in the LFA National League.
There has been huge criticism in the local media over Debbah’s selection of 19-foreign based players with some pundits calling for reduction of the foreign contingent.
There has also been quarrel over Debbah six locals, especially Alvin Marccornel who has not been regular for BYC for the crucial back to back 2017 Africa Cup of Nation Clash against Djibouti, but the former PSG striker has justified that the local league is below standard.
Debbah also justified that defender Marconnel was better that LFA 2015-2016 topflight League best defender Richard Lloyd of Watanga FC.
“I have been reading in the papers about the best local players that I left out,Abraham Barshall, Mark Paye, and why I selected Alvin Maccornel over the likes of Richard Lloyd. Do you want me to drop Dioh Williams or William Jebor for Mark Paye, absolutely no, these guys are playing in top leagues.
“Our League is by substandard; our teams are not progressing in the preliminary of CAF competition. On the Maccornel issue, he is better than Richard Lloyd, though is the local League best defender with due respect,” the former Mighty Barrole hero told a news conference in Monrovia Saturday before he departed Monrovia with his local contingent Djibouti.
Debbah has confirmed Tonia Tisdell and Dioh Williams are part of the squad expected to face Djibouti this Thursday, clearing doubt over the duos status.
It has been in the news that Tisdell was facing a passport problem and that he could not be available for the back to back clash, while Dioh Williams was thought to have been involve with some internal problem in Sweden.
But speaking Saturday before the team departure from Monrovia, Debbah said all is now well with the players. “Tonia is ready and set for the match, he will join us in Djibouti. The passport issue has been solved. For Dioh it was a manor problem and it has also been solved both players will be on hand away and in Monrovia.
Meanwhile reports say nine of the 19- players invited arrived in Djibouti on Sunday, while the rest were duein late last night.
Players in Djibouti are Theo Lewis Weeks of ERMIS (Cyprus), Solomon Grimes of NEA SALAMINA FAMAGUSTA FC (Cyprus), Omega Roberts of FK DONJI SREM (Serbia) and Gizzie Dorbor of HAPOEL AFULA(Israel).
Others are Kpah Sherman of SANTOS (South Africa), Zah Krangar of FELDA UNITED FC (Malaysia), Patrick Wleh of SELANGOR (Malaysia), Teah Dennis of AL AHLI (Jordan) and Marcus MaCcaulley of AL AHLI(Jordan).
The local delegation headed by LFA 2nd Vice President Cassell Kuoh and Coach James Salinsa Debbah along with Technical Director Henry Brown arrived in Djibouti early Monday morning.
Debbah included only six local players for the must win double-header against Djibouti, whose outcome will largely boost their chances of qualifying for the continental showpiece event.
Liberia will battle Djibouti on Thursday, 24 March 2016 before hosting the return five days later in Monrovia.
Liberia has three points from their previous two games, three shy of leaders Togo and victories against pointless Djibouti will serve a huge boost to their chances of qualification.
The Lone Star has failed to qualify for the AFCON since 2002. The Lone Stars made their debut appearance was in 1996 in South Africa.
Goalkeepers: Tommy Songo (LISCR, Liberia), Samson Giddings (FC Fassell, Liberia), James Gally (Watanga FC, Liberia)
Defenders: Solomon Grimes (Nea Salamis Famagusta, Cyprus), Trokon Zeon (LPRC Oilers, Liberia), Gizzie Dorbor (HapoelAfula, Israel), Hilton Varney (Barrack Young Controllers, Liberia), Teah Dennis (Al-Ahli, Jordan), DirkirGlay (Mpumalanga Black Aces, South Africa), Omega Roberts (FK Donji Srem, Serbia), Alvin Macconough (Barrack Young Controllers, Liberia)
Midfielders: Alseny Keita (Jeanne d’Arc de Drancy, France), Dulee Johnson (Molde FK, Norway), Anthony Laffor (Mamelodi Sundowns, South Africa), Theo Weeks (Ermis Aradippou, Cyprus), Dioh Williams (Gefle IF, Sweden), Zah Kranga (FELDA United, Malaysia), Tonia Tisdell (Karabukspor, Turkey), Kpah Sherman (Santos, South Africa),
Melvin George (Hantharwady United FC, Myanmar), Marcus Macauley (Al Ahli, Jordan)
Forwards: William Jebor (SD Ponferradina, Spain), Sam Johnson (Djurgardens, Sweden),
Patrick Wleh (Selangor FA, Malaysia), Sekou Conneh (Bethlehem Steel FC, USA)