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Every word from Coach Freeman Amponsah’s post-Ridge City chat

Coach Freeman Amponsah had plenty to smile about after we eased to a 3-1 win over Ridge City FC at the Madina Astroturf on Wednesday morning.

The points were virtually assured after a two-goal blast in the opening 35 minutes, as we got back to winning ways and cemented out to the top 4 of the table.

Every word from Coach Freeman Amponsah's post-Ridge City chat

After the game the manager spoke to the media of Berry Ladies FC and discussed the performance, Elizabeth Linking Boateng’s first Women’s Premier League start for Berry Ladies FC, Priscilla Sintim Agyemang’s fitness, Comfort Yeboah’s first goal for Berry Ladies FC and Regina Donkor’s influence and Martha Appiah’s new free role.

Here’s a full transcript from his post-match press chat…

On the first-half performance…
I’m really pleased with the first 60 minutes. The way we approached the game, the way we started, our energy. There was a lot of movement, we played forward, scored some great goals and really connected with our supporters and created the atmosphere we wanted. After 60 minutes we should have scored four or five, we didn’t do that and after conceding the goal there is still a long period to play and we should have managed the game a little better.

On how much we needed that result…
I don’t have a number, but personally a lot because if we want to have any chance to prepare ourselves towards the champions cup/Super Cup we had to win today. There was something there, we wanted to end the season with 30 points to make that statement, after today we are, and our job was done today and there are still more to go from August 2023.

On how Elizabeth Boateng Linking performed…
She looked ready, she looked fresh, she looked really determined and with a bit of low confidence. She’s been getting better and better every single day, not only in training but her interaction and her body language. She’s more settled and she’s a player that I really like, that’s why we added her to the team. She has the potential at her age to be great and she had a big task against the players she had to face today, and I think she did really well.

On Priscilla Agyemang Sintim’s injury…
She wasn’t comfortable. We tried for 10 or 15 minutes but she could not carry on which is strange for Priscilla. So we are a bit concerned about that because normally she’s not one that wants to leave the pitch but she showed determination to still be in it, but the team physio’s and doctors will check her up after today.

On whether criticism of Victoria Salifu after this game was silenced…
I don’t know because I don’t read those comments. What I can say is that she’s been exceptional for us. You look at her contribution, every single day in the team and then what she does out there for us every single time, it’s exceptional. The perfect player that plays perfect football every time doesn’t exist. But what Victoria has done this season deserves a lot of credit and I am proud she is part of our top goal scorers this season with 5 goals.

On her goals and assists stats this season…
That’s what we had to get out of her, she’s got the talent. But she needed to occupy different spaces and become a threat. And have the mentality to win matches, not just to control games. I think that’s changed. And when you have someone who is as humble as her and has every single day to push and learn and train, these things happen, and I think she is rewarded for her work.

On whether the players have belief the top 4 cup title race isn’t over…
For sure. We discussed that. We are at the top 4 right now, we have games to play I think from August or September this year. We have to prepare for that after a short break. Let’s see what happens, what we can control is to win our matches, and to do that we have to perform as well as possible.

On whether it would have been easy to drop their heads now…
We cannot do that. To be in the position we are in after ten months, against the team we are fighting, being there and having the opportunity today to be top 4, we’re not going to allow anybody not to talk about it and not to feel it. We have to enjoy, and we have to embrace it, and we have to maximize the opportunity we have because we don’t know what’s going to happen this champions cup/ Super Cup and next season.

On what he’s learnt during this intense period…
How great it is to win a football match. The feeling that I have right now is nothing like that. Going to the dressing room and feeling that energy, there is nothing like it. Everything that we go through is positive and negative, is worth it when you have moments like that. But anything, it’s just being next to them in the difficult moments, they deserve everything from us. The way they try, sometimes it was better than other times, but they fully deserve our full support.

On if he found it difficult to keep himself up during the tough moments…
No, it’s just about not putting the message too much on them. I wake up in the morning and cannot wait to start working; [seeing] what we are going to do, how we’re going to maintain that, and I know that we are taking those players to the very limit of where we are. But this is the only way to do it with this group of players to be where we are.

On if people underestimate today’s performance based off  few week’s display against Teams we lost to…
I don’t know but this is our job. In elite sport, you’re going to have moments where you feel like you’ve failed and you feel like you have disappointed people, which is the worst thing for me, it’s that feeling that we’ve created something so well and then you feel like you’ve disappointed people, and that emotion is not nice, and it takes a while to get out of your system. But then we have to bounce back and try to give joy and pride to people, and that’s what you try to do when you play.

On if today’s result gives renewed energy to the team ahead of our trip to Champions cup/ Super Cup…
Winning gives us a reset, playing the way we play, given the team that we are and win the game. Obviously, that gives you confidence, comfort and makes it better for you tomorrow when you start to prepare for other matches.

On what Hannah Buabeng (Hannah Esi Dodoo) brought to the team today…
What she brings every single day in training: leadership, intelligence, capacity to control the game, the way she communicates with people, the quality that she brings, the level of attention, the experience because she’s been in many situations like these before. That’s just the way she plays.

On if it’s easier to focus for the task at hand following all the build-up to the Champions Cup/ Super Cup…
Yes, that chapter 2022/2023 Malta Guinness Women’s Premier League is gone. The one for today, will be gone tomorrow morning. We have to focus on the next one that is Champions Cup/Super Cup and how we’re going to prepare to win those games.

On whether Regina Donkor and Comfort Yeboah set the tone for today…
Yes, but I think they’ve done on that many occasions throughout the season. The energy that they have, when they haven’t got the ball, their movements, their defensive quality, the way they are in that dressing room is exceptional. We’re really pleased to have them as our supportive back allowing Martha Appiah to move freely now.

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READ ALSO:

Coach Freeman Amponsah analysis of Berry Ladies FC 4-0 Thunder Queens FC

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Copyright 2023 Berry Ladies Football Club. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.berryladiesfcgh.com as the source.

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