17.04.2004 Sports News

Sly and co. Liberated from African Cup Phobia

By Michael Oti Adjei
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It might have taken long in coming but Liberty professionals and king faisal finally made their African cup debut in Africa club competition sunday.And whilst the results were different, the feeling of satisfaction they finally made was mutual.

For faisal, it was alot more special because, they capped a debut appearance with a fine win. A renowned Zimbabwean newspaper wrote that the match "should have ended 4-0, but for the recklessness of the men upfront". lf reports about faisals dominance were anything to go by, you sense that Kumasi's other club would march into the next round of the newly created confederations cup in style and with a thumping.

Liberty were not the dominant but given that this was a first game, there would be few within the Dansoman club who would be disappointed with the outcome.The team and group of journalist,spent two days travelling to get to the match destination, Huambo. When match day came, the strain of travelling, changing flights, packing and unpacking took its toll on the players.Still it took one goal for petro Huambo to walk out winners, it was a goal they took well but one too that the Liberty boys would look back to admit they could have prevented .

The defence back line of James Desrama,lssifu Ansah and mates were hesitant in clearing their lines and when the ball was threaded through to Eliseau, he was allowed too much room to shoot. Even then, you sense goalkeeper Ptrick Antwi could have done alot more than just miss the ball slightly.

The irony was that the goal came at a time when Liberty were having their best playing a brand of football that had the partisan.Previously,Liberty had just refused to play in africa even when they had qualified for the very familiar reason; financial.Now club president Sly Tetteh says : "we are not thinking about the finances.Now we want to be known outside Ghana which is why we registered to play in this competition."

But how far can the club's coffers carry it? would they be able to for instance go all the way in the newly created confederations cup without crumbling under the strain of the finances? Liberty is a strange club but also for many the model club in terms of sound management and financial security.

Even since it started playing in the premier division, it has gained a reputation as a star factory reputation but has managed remarkably to displace the likes of Goldfields and Great olympics as everyone's favourite after the big two, Hearts and kotoko.Check out the list of players who have passed through; Derick Boateng, Peter Ofori Quaye, Anthony Obodai, William Tiero and Michael Essien are some of the examples and the club is still selling.

Kudos Sly Tetteh.

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