The Diaspora World Cup USA
Sierra Rangers is presently representing Sierra Leone in the Diaspora World Cup USA. The League brings out the best players representing 20 different countries in Maryland. Our Players were selected from different states Maryland, Virginia, Washington, DC, New Jersey and more. The idea behind competing in the league is to gain more recognition for our beloved Sierra Leone as a country and to promote the young talented players we have in the United States. We have so many talented Sierra Leone players that come to this country but the American football system doesn’t give chances to most of these players to showcase their talents. Before you know it they will be playing in different amateur leagues and getting paid by games. Most of the old players from Sierra Leone that have gone through this process have come together to establish a program and team that will guide the other players that are coming in so they will not go through the same route and end up like them.
Sierra Leoneans are the most talented foreign or international players than any other country in the United States. They are always recognized with outstanding performances when they play for different amateur leagues for different teams. We see coaches from different nationalities (Nigeria, Mexico, Honduras Cameroon, Ghana, USA to name a few) paying our players to play for their teams and represent them in different international tournaments in the United States. This just shows how much talent that we have. However, there is nobody or program in place to help and guide the young talents through the system so that they can make it to professional level.
I (coach Kaloga) selected my players from different states but I mainly focus on the younger guys who have bright future and have potential to make it to the next stage.
Sierra Rangers consists of most the young boys that came from F.C. Johansen youth team (Pele, Bako, Emmanuel, Kelly, Larry, Kolozay, Tamu) and they are doing extremely well with the other senior players. We have played three games in the competitions so far. Our first game was against Tanzania we won 6-1 former F.C. Johansen player (Pele) scored 4 goals. He is one of our young outstanding and arguably the best and exciting player in the tournament right now. We lost our second game against Trinidad & Tobago 2-1. It was tough played game. We made a couple of mistakes, gave away two goals due to poor defending and did not make use of our chances. We dominated possessions and we had a lot of chances to win the game but it was not our day. The team’s only goal was scored by another F.C. Johansen Youth player Kelly Marrah.
We played our third game against the league favorite, and defending champion England on May 10th. The team put up an outstanding performance in this game. We took the game to England we started attacking them from the get go and took them out of their possession and long ball game. The fans were full of surprise to see an African team with fine possessions, attacking and defending together as a team. The odds were against us before the game started but even the England players were surprised and impressed with my team’s style of play.
We gained more recognition after the game as spectators start asking me where are we from. The majority of the England players and fans don’t know about Sierra Leone and only heard about us after the game.
We dominated the game in all aspects thoughout the 90 minute. We won the game 2-0. Our first goal came in the 27th minute of the first half when attacking forward Tonny Flexx took a shot from 25 yards. The England goal keeper spills the ball and Kelly Marrah was quick to react and finish to give us a lead. The second goal came in the second half in the 75th minute when Midfielder Goodwin made a through pass to Tonny Flexx and he finished it off to give us 2-0 lead which secured the game for us.
We are expecting a tough derby game this coming weekend on May 18th against rival country Liberia. We are going with the same mentality and will not settle for anything but a win.
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