On Sunday afternoon, Liberty Professionals FC won 1-0 against newly promoted Tema Youth FC. I have to say that this was a very poor game between two teams that seems to lack attacking power. Based on the matches I have seen so far this season, Tema Youth FC looks like relegation candidates.
Daniel Agyei (born 10.11.1989) is the captain and first choice goalkeeper at Liberty Professionals FC. He also became the only scorer of the game through a wonderfully taken penalty in the first half.
Agyei is a modern goalkeeper with great ball control, powerful kicking and a lot of confidence. Agyei plays with authority and was almost flawless in goal, although he was never really tested.
Richard Antwi played at the left-back, his first game of the season. Antwi did OK but failed to stand out. The right-back was youngster Kennedy Ashia (born 13.12.1994). The petit and lively Ashia was rather invisible in this match. The central defence consisted of Alfred Nelson (born 18.08.1992) and Kingsley Nteng. Nelson is a rock – tall, strong with good jumping. Alfred Nelson was named in the squad of the Ghana U-20 national football team earlier this month.
Nteng is more of a quiet performer but he is also an effective defender who had a good game. Francis Morton (born 05.11.1992) played at the left-wing and Daniel Gyamfi (born 28.09.1984) played at the right-wing. Morton, with set-pieces as one of his forces, always works hard but he needs to concentrate more to pin-point his crosses. Gyamfi had a poor game by his own high standards as his passes went all over the place.
The impressive Isaac Sackey and Issah Yakubu is an impressive midfield duo. Sackey is a lanky, elegant central midfielder. I noticed that Sackey was one of few players able to send long passes with accuracy. Isaac Sackey was named in the squad of the Ghana U-20 national football team earlier this month.
Yakubu is the more creative of the two and a very hard-working, lively player, who covers almost the entire field.
Morton was replaced with Michael Helegbe (born 15.09.1985) and Sackey was replaced with James Kotey. This meant that Gyamfi went down to the right-back, Ashia took Morton’s role at the left-wing, and Yakubu took over the right-back. The creative Helegbe, who surprisingly started the match at the bench, and the holding midfielder Kotey formed the central midfield. I guess the point was to balance the midfield, but I personally think Tema Youth FC took over the match after these substitutions.
Fodé Moussa Sylla and Zuberu Fuseini formed the attacking pair. Sylla, the lanky striker from Guinea, never really looked dangerous, despite working hard and winning duels in the air. According to unconfirmed sources, Fuseini is only 16 years old. Fuseini is very energetic, he works hard, but his touches did not impress me. Sylla was replaced with James Kwame Abban (born 31.07.1988), the strong and quick striker, who seemed positive the few minutes he played.
I have never seen Tema Youth FC before and this was a very poor team in my opinion. However, a few bright spots were to be found. The experienced goalkeeper Joseph Halm had a good game and did not make any mistakes. Halm showed good positional sense. As far as I have understood, Halm has been one of the best players at the club so far this season. He has been ever present after the first four rounds. Joshua Oninku played at left-back while Emmanuel Boateng played at the right-back. I was impressed with these players, who both were willing to join the attack. They were quite similar players, not very tall but strongly built. Oninku has been ever present so far this season, while Boateng played his first match of the season.
Boateng was replaced with Isaac Amoah, who seemed like an interesting striker.
Kenneth Owusu and Joseph Larweh Attamah was the central defensive pair. Owusu was most impressive and kept the defence together. Owusu is a very tough player who took several beatings during the match. I had problems finding Attamah although he played the entire match. He did not stand out, but seemed to be a quiet performer.
I had very much looked forward to see the midfield duo of Moses Odjer and Derrick Mensah. Odjer, the playmaker of the team, is a much hyped player. According to unconfirmed sources, Odjer is only 15 years old. Odjer made some clever passes but he failed to control the game.
The picture is of Moses Odjer, and is taken from http://sportsinghana.com.
Derrick Mensah, an athletic central midfielder, was part of the Ghana U-23 national football team in early 2011. Mensah was the engine room of the team and a lot of the passes went in his directions. However, Mensah struggled to distribute the ball to the more attacking players at the team. Mensah was replaced with Stephen Tetteh, also a central midfielder. Bernard Akuffo (born 20.12.1986) is the captain of the team and he made a great example with his powerful running and hard work. His distribution was impressive at times. Akuffo played at the left of the midfield.
Francis Narh played at the right of the midfield and despite working hard, he was largely ineffective. Nevertheless, I got a good feeling about Narh, who has been ever present this season. Abdulai Hamza (born 30.11.1987), the player with the most impressive CV, had a free role in front of the midfielders. Hamza had a quiet game and never looked dangerous. He was replaced with Benjamin Terry who caused havoc immediately. Terry seemed like an interesting player, perhaps most comfortable at the left-wing, who should get more chances. Daniel Appiah was the striker of the evening. Appiah was apparently a regular scorer when Tema Youth FC won promotion, but this was not easy to see during this match. However, Appiah worked hard and seemed like a player who could excel if given the support he needs.