Sierra Leone Telegraph: 4 October 2021:
Sierra Leone’s Leone Stars football team arrived yesterday Sunday 3rd October, 2021 at the Mohammed the 5th International Airport in Casablanca, the Kingdom of Morocco.
The team is in Morocco to participate in three international friendly matches on the 6th, 9th and 12th October 2021 with The Gambia, South Sudan and the host Morocco respectively.
The three friendly matches are part of the teams’ preparation for the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon, where Leone Stars of Sierra Leone have been grouped with defending champion-Algeria, two times champions-Ivory Coast, and former host- Equatorial-Guinea.
Surely a bright spot in the doom and gloom that surround us. We’re a footballing nation. When Leone Stars are on the pitch, we forget our woes and sorrows. We become one nation; there’s no such a thing as Susu,Kono , Yalunka, Temene, Mende, Limba etc; it’s a moment when if an opponent brings one of ours down we have trouble restraining ourselves from invading the pitch, not caring about the tribe of our own ,nor what region he hails from. Why is it then that when it comes to politics the worst in us shines through?
When Maada Bio took over, he did say he would revive the football league in the country. His interest alone has injected some life into the game – he should be commended for it. Our Leone Stars have shown lately that they are not pushovers. A few months ago, they nearly stopped the collective heart of Nigeria when ,with four goals down, the lions from lion mountain roared with national pride, bared their teeth and claws, pinned the Nigerians down , and came home with a stupendous draw.
Let us pray that whenever they play none of them sustain any serious injury knowing the state of medical care in the country. And I don’t believe any government in power would care enough to do anything lasting for any player whose career is cut short because of injury. These young people simply play for love of the game and country. The nation does very little for them compared to government officials who do nothing apart from stealing.
Good luck with your friendly football fixtures, as you prepare to play in the finals of the African nations cup. When it comes to football matches like this, there is nothing friendly about going into this games when one thinks about the psychological effects it has on players and the team sprites it has if you win or lose the game. Winning this games is as important as winning all the games you participate in.Friendly or not. So the Leone Stars should go into this friendlies like they are playing in the finals of the African cup of Nations final. Win or lose, always bare in mind so far you’ve done our country proud. Your performance have touched a lot of lives in our country. You are the beacon of hope and good news in our country. You have brought smiles to Sierra Leoneans faces that put their differences aside and rooted for you.
As the football mantra goes “football brings everyone together, it brings smiles to people’s faces, it brings ethnic groups together and more. Football is a symbol that means that everyone can-at the same time, compete and live together” If football was class as democracy, one will suggest is the best democratic principles which all nations states should aspire to live by. Is transparent, colour blind, and you only achieve your goals through hard work No cheating of the system. That is why corruption will never thrive in the game of football. Those that tried it, always get caught out. You have become the role model of what is possible, in a society deeply polarised and standing in the cross road of an identity crisis that have plagued our country in recent years. Good luck to the one and only Leone Stars. God bless the Republic of Sierra Leone.
We wish our Darling Leone Stars good luck.