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Lone Stars World Cup Finals debut possible- JNJ

By Kolubah Zayzay
The Lone Star Squard
The Lone Star Squard

(mylbsonline/Liberia)-A former head coach of the Liberia National Football Team says Liberia’s recent win over Iraq in an International Friendly is a significant boast for the team.

Josiah Johnson said: “The team’s win over Iraq is also a motivation for the team’s away match against the Cranes of Uganda next month.

Mr. Johnson is also a former player of both the ‘Lone Star’ and one of the oldest local teams, ‘Mighty Barrolle.

The Lone Star Monday May 27, 2013 defeated the Lions of Iraq 1-0 in an interesting International Friendly as the country intensifies preparations for it crucial away tie against Uganda Cranes.

Mr. Johnson, speaking to mylbsonline Sports Friday, May 31, 2013 in Paynesville, said: “Liberia’s win was not a surprise, because I believe in the Jericho Nagbe technical team.”

“No, it’s not a surprise. I think it’s good for the coaches to have these kinds of games involving the local players who should be on the standby for first team assignment, if overseas players failed to show up”, he said in a very pleasing mood.

He wants people criticizing the Lone Star’s friendly against Iraq to re-think and build confidence in the current Lone Star selection.

The former National Team Coach added: “There are positive signs that the ‘Lone Star’ will beat Uganda away. Liberians should therefore give all their support to the team.”

“Iraq is not a small side in football as they were at the 1986 World Cup finals. Iraq is a big footballing country than Liberia,” the former Lone Star striker emphasized.

Mr. Johnson, commonly referred to by local football fans as ‘JNJ’, however, called for concerted efforts to build a formidable home-based national team.

According to him, such a team would ably represent Liberia at International sporting events in the instance where foreign-based players are not available.

“I want Liberians to put their faith in Jericho Nagbe and his technical team. If they are empowered and the players are satisfied, the ‘Lone Star’ could be at the 2014 FIFA World Cup Finals as the tournament’s ‘surprise’ candidate.”

“The LFA and other Liberians need to give all the support to the technical team to make it succeed as no foreign coach has ever qualified Liberia for any tournament,” the one time striker said.

He emphasized: “The money and logistics given foreign coaches in the past need to be given the current care taker manager and his assistants.”

“If you look at Lone Star’s statistics, the team has never succeeded under European coaches. Our national team had European Coaches even when I was playing, but it did not succeed,” the former Lone Star scorer also told mylbsonlin.

Coach Johnson concluded: “Be it a foreign coach or not, once the players are satisfied, they will give us the needed victory. I’m optimistic that this World Cup is open and that we can go to Uganda and win 2-0.”

The Lone Star of Liberia is expected to depart the country next Thursday, June 6, 2013 for Kampala, Uganda for their away tie against the Cranes.


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