Only days after dispatching the lowly Seychelles team 3:0 in Victoria and getting their first three points in the battle for AFCON 2019 qualification, the Super Eagles travel to Liberia to be part of a friendly game which will honour the current Liberian President and football legend George Weah by officially retiring his jersey. George Weah had spells in Monaco, Paris St. Germaine and later Chelsea, but he will be most remembered for his time at AC Milan.
The famous striker Weah had 60 appearances for the Liberian national football team, nicknamed the Lone Stars, scoring a total of 22 goals. He had a short spell coaching the national team before he went into politics to try and make a change. After spending more than 10 years trying, finally, earlier this year in January, he was sworn in as the 25th Liberian President. On this great occasion for him, his family and Liberia, his number fourteen jersey will be officially retired.
The Super Eagles were honoured by being selected to play part in this ceremony and have arrived in Liberia in great spirits. Their next qualifying match for the AFCON 2019 tournament is against Libya and this game will serve as good preparation for that match and a chance to try a few new things. Even though Nigeria is much higher in the FIFA ranking than Liberia who are ranked as number 158 in the World, coach Gernot Rohr will want for his Eagles to improve their game ahead of the next important match.
Four home-based players have been called up to this largely experimental squad along with a few international players who will be in the team for the first time. The coach wants to test these young players and see which ones are ready for a step up in their careers and who he can count on in the next two deciding qualifying matches. In a statement, Gernot Rohr said he wants this squad to be aggressive with the ball, to be more clinical in front of goal and to play with a tempo. This will be a challenge for them and he hopes they will all rise to it.
Nigeria and Liberia have played each other 13 times so far. The Super Eagles have won eight games while the Lone Stars managed three victories. In their last encounter, in 2012, the Eagles won 6:1. They will try to repeat that tonight in a celebration of football at the Samuel Kanyon Doe Sports Stadium in Monrovia.