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AFCON: Liberia to unleash 13 foreign-based pros against Congo DR

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Coach Thomas Kojo has invited 13 foreign-based players to form part of his provisional squad to face DR Congo in the upcoming encounter in Monrovia.

Local players, under the guidance of Deputy Coach Sam Chebli, have for the past days continued preparation for the 2019 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifiers slated for September 9 at the Samuel Kanyon Doe (SKD) Sports Complex in Paynesville, outside Monrovia.

According to a release from the Liberia Football Association, Coach Kojo, who is currently in Bulgaria heading a team of youthful Liberian players at the SATUC World Cup, invited Spanish-based goalkeeper, Boison Wynney De Souza of RCD Mallorca II, Joel Johnson Alajarin (right-back) of Charlotte Independence, Teah Dennis(center-back) and Adolphus Marshall (left-back) of Gudja United FC.

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Others are midfielder Mohammed Sangare of Newcastle United, who has received his first national team call-up, Murphy Oscar Dorley of Slovan Liberec, Sylvanus Nimely of Spartak Moscow II, and Norwegian- based Sam Johnson.
The rest include Anthony Laffor, William Jebor, Terrence Tisdell of Mozambican club Costa do Sol, Seku Conneh of South Korea’s Ansan Greener and in form Liberian player Kpah Sherman, who plays for MIFA in Malaysia, completes the list of invited stars.

Lone Star’s next opponent DR Congo, are currently seated second in the group with three points, following their 3-1 win over Congo-Brazzaville, while Liberia kicked off their qualifier campaign in Group C with a poor performance after losing 3-0 to Zimbabwe. The game was played last year at the National Sports Stadium in Harare, the capital.

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Namibia qualifies for 2024 Men’s T20 World Cup

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Namibia has qualified for the 2024 Men’s T20 World Cup which will hold in United States and the West Indies, after a top-two guaranteed finish in the African qualifiers with a game to spare.

The Eagles triumphed over Tanzania 58-run in Windhoek and now sit on top of the table with five wins from five matches after previously defeating Zimbabwe, Uganda, Rwanda and Kenya.

Uganda, Kenya and Zimbabwe still remain in contention to secure second spot in the table and join Namibia at the T20 World Cup next year, with Uganda facing east African rivals, Kenya on Wednesday.

The qualification of Namibia for next year’s 20-team tournament will be the country’s third consecutive appearance at the T20 World Cup, which makes them one of the most successful African teams in the Championship.

The Eagles reached the Super 12 stage as first-time qualifiers in the UAE in 2021 but however suffered a first round group-stage exit in Australia last year.

Speaking on the feat, Rudie van Vuuren, president of Cricket Namibia, said it was a testimony to the dedication of the players and coaching crew.

“We’re very proud of the boys, of Pierre de Bruyn and his coaching team and also Gerhard Erasmus, the captain of the team,” Van Vuuren told BBC Sport Africa.

“The boys played professional cricket throughout, really a high standard of cricket. And you can see the fact that we have a professional set-up eventually makes the difference in this kind of tournament.

“It is exciting times for Namibia. We have a strong pipeline developing. We look forward to the T20 World Cup and then, building on that, the Under-19 World Cup in 2026 and obviously the 50-over World Cup in 2027”, he added.

Namibia will co-host the Cricket World Cup in 2027 alongside South Africa and Zimbabwe, and will finish their group campaign against Nigeria on Thursday.

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Cameroon: Ambazonian separatists issue death threats to ex-Nigerian soccer stars, Okocha, Amokachi

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Cameroonian separatist group, Ambazonia has issued death threats to former Nigerian football stars, Austin “Jay-Jay” Okocha and Daniel Amokachi, among other retired Nigerian players, invited by former Cameroon striker and current President of Cameroon Football Association, Samuel Eto’o, for a ceremonial tournament on November 30.

Eto’o had extended the invitation to the Nigerian players as well as other retired players both in Africa and other parts of the world to be part of the game aimed at promoting sporting relationships and football development in Cameroon.

The tournament is scheduled to hold in Victoria City in southwest Cameroon which is a part of the stronghold of the Ambazonia group which has been fighting for the independence of the English speaking region of the central African country.

In the warning issued to the Nigerian greats by one Comrade Chris Anon, who claimed to be head of the Ambazonia Interim Government based in the United States of America, the group warned Okocha, Amokachi and other invitees to stay away from the tournament or they would be killed as it has ordered a total lockdown on Victoria City and entire Fago County on the said date of November 30.

The group which calls itself the
“Restoration Fighters of the Ambazonia Interim Government”, also warned residents to stay indoors, stressing that violation of the order would be met with death.

The death threat message from Anon said:

“The Restoration Fighters of Ambazonia control Victoria and the entire county and are committed to ensuring the lockdown.

“Our determination to safeguard the integrity of the Ambazonia independence struggle will not be deterred. We show no mercy to anyone who attempts to disregard the lockdown.

“It is essential to emphasize the severity of the situation and to caution against actions that could be misconstrued as aligning with any forms of propaganda.

“The football match proposed by Samuel Eto’o is very controversial; it is a misguided and insensitive initiative. That decision to involve international players from Nigeria is deeply troubling.

“The timing and location of the tournament give rise to suspicions. We seriously and strongly caution Jay Jay Okocha, Daniel Amokachi, and others who are promoting and preparing to participate in the tournament to reconsider their involvement as their participation may unintentionally result in bloodshed.

“We cannot help but question Samuel Eto’o’s decision to organize this tournament in Victoria, an Ambazonia territory that has been marred by war for over seven years, for which 30,000 Ambazonians have been killed.

“It raises legitimate concerns about potential exploitation of the situation for purposes that are not in the best interests of Victoria and Ambazonia in general.”

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