Coach Freeman Amponsah urged Berry Ladies FC’s players and supporters to ‘fight with all we have’ and rise to the occasion for another ‘special’ Ghana Women’s Premier League meeting with Soccer Intellectuals Ladies FC.
The much anticipated, second leg meet up gets under way on Friday 24th February 2023 at 3PM with Coach Reginald Asante and Coach Freeman Amponsah side visit Eduyaw Assasan Park, home of Soccer Intellectuals Ladies FC
To preview the first-leg encounter, Coach Freeman spoke to the media team of Berry Ladies FC and “This is Berries” Team and was quizzed on a wide range of topics – read on to see what he had to say…
On how previous meetings with Soccer Intellectuals are influencing Berry Ladies FC’s mindset ahead of this game…
I don’t know what to say about that, to be frank with you all. Different things and circumstances happened to us with Soccer Intellectuals Ladies FC the last time we met with them.
With the story of Berry Ladies FC, though we lost to Police Ladies FC, I believe the players played with their heart, but our tactics was not top-notch and now the previous game with Soccer Intellectuals Ladies we played a good game, and we won the game, and that’s the celebrated word: we won. We did, we scored 2 goals and we were extremely happy. You could see in the game how tactically good they were.
We played with a lot of mixed feelings and news all over about some players leaving and all but now we have new additions to the team with a new coach and experienced technical team members so our game months ago will change with different tactics and energies. There’s a history. In the last few years one of us was kind of always trying hard but we always beat Soccer Intellectuals Ladies FC. This time we play each other, so let’s see who can secure this three points.
In drawing encouragement from Berry Ladies FC looking ‘a lot more like a team again’…
True, we did. But we still have to prove that point, so that’s how it is. Now this is a different competition and whatever we can take, but after that it’s Lady Strikers FC. So, we need results, there’s no shadow of a doubt. We were already in a similar situation, I don’t say performance-wise but result-wise we were in a similar situation directly after the World Cup break. I think with the two wins, it looked like, ‘Oh now we are there.’ So, we have to prove that point. But you are right, it looks different – we feel it, we see it, it helps the mood massively and from here we have to go. That’s how it is.
But for Friday, whatever we will do at the weekday training sessions, I will expect us to fight with all we have. I expect Berry Ladies FC Fans to give us all their support, to be honest. I’m really happy for the people that they saw us in a better shape in the last 5 games, that they have a bit more things to look forward to. And yeah, let’s go together again.
On Soccer Intellectuals Ladies FC being the ‘ultimate test’ in Malta Guinness Women Premier League…
Yeah, yeah, they are. One of our players told me – I don’t even know if it is true or not – that their players and some technical staff of Soccer Intellectuals Ladies FC said after our previous match, ‘Berry Ladies FC was cool that day, they know exactly what they will face’. -we have to win this game.
On whether Berry Ladies FC will be able to make Soccer Intellectuals Ladies FC ‘panic’…
Generally, I don’t think you can make this team panic. There were enough reasons; the chances we had and the saves their keeper had to make, that’s where somebody could think, ‘Oh my God, we have to close this gap or this gap…’ What it looked like, what held us a little bit back. We didn’t take enough in little moments, we were not adventurous enough, were super-protected because of the counter attacks, the possible counter-attack threat – [and] rightly so [as] we saw with the goals. Analysis is always super easy, especially months later, you can tell here we could pass this ball and here we could pass that ball. We just don’t have to undermine them though we won the first leg
On whether Berry Ladies FC will have a plan to negate the threat of their forward…
We always do try; we try to deny passes to them, but the problem we have is a little bit like, if you can defend one attacker properly then there’s another. I am sure they are also thinking on how to negate our attacks too because of Jafaru Rahama, Jackline Amponsah, Portia Sakyiwaa and Victoria Salifu but unfortunately, we also battling with injuries among our attackers. They have very good players, and you have to defend them collectively. That’s what we will try to do, and they will also try and do as well.
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