On the 19th, October 2020 during a Press Conference held at the Home Suite Hotel, officials of the Ministry of Sports and the Sierra Leone Football Association updated media practitioners about the friendly encounters with Mauritania and Niger respectively.
In his submission, Minister of Sports, Ibrahim Nyelenkeh, apologized to member of the Fourth Estate for not formally informing them before departing for the friendlies. He further expressed his satisfaction of the performance of Leone Stars, heaping praises on the home-based players put together by Head Coach, John Edward Keista.
Minister Nyelenkeh further explained that for far too long he has not seen a homebased team performed in such a manner and that if only some amount of time and chance is given to both the Coach and Players, a bright future lies ahead.
“The Government is committed to ensuring that the team receives more support and as Government we are asking for patience and time with the Coach to achieve bigger and positive results”, the Minister added.
Head of Delegation, Ali Badara Tarawallie, said, “as a FA we wanted to assess the performance and form of the team and see where we can improve and continue to support the team.”
Leones Stars lost to both Mauritania and Niger 2-1 and 1-0 respectively.
Coach John Keista said it was a difficult situation as the nation was expecting positive results but noted that the team is on a transition period and the technical team is working to bringing new players to fit in various positions.
“We are building a team that will be fit to compete in the AFCON Qualifiers and this is a transition for us. We are coming in with new faces to the team and we were not expecting results from the friendlies”, Keister added.
Sierra Leone will play Nigeria in November both home and away in the 2021 AFCON Qualifiers. Victory over Nigeria will put the team in a comfortable position to qualify.