Wonder kid goalie Ashley Williams is among seven players, who were part of the national team of Liberia at the just ended West African Football Union (Wafu) under-20 Nations Cup finals in Guinea in November.
In a release from the local football house, these players will appear before the Liberia Football Association (LFA) grievance and disciplinary committee on Tuesday 14th January 2020. It followed a damning report, which was submitted to LFA Technical Director Henry Browne by head coach Robert Lartey on 4 December. The players will give reason(s) why disciplinary actions should not be taken against them for having violated the national team’s code of conduct and camping regulations. The committee is chaired by former LFA President Izetta Wesley and includes Cllr. Kula Jackson and veteran football administrator Joseph Farkollie among others.
They are captain Ashley Williams, second vice-captain Jeremy Saygbe and Marlon Harrison of LISCR FC; Alvin Gbotoe, Jestino Jackson and Rufus Padmore of Barrack Young Controllers (BYC-II) and vice-captain Ben Benaiah of Nimba United.
According to Cllr. Wesley, the hearing will be closed-door but the findings will be made public.The executive committee, in an emergency sitting, endorsed the disciplinary hearing and awaits its findings.
What are their charges?
On 26 November, defender Benaiah allegedly insulted medic Melvin Jerry at a dinner following advice to control his diet ahead of the opening match with the Gambia, which Liberia lost 1-0 on 27 November at the September 28 Stadium in Conakry.
Defender Saygbe, who was a roommate to Benaiah, is alleged to have slept with a female on the camp on 26 November. On 27 November, midfielder Gbotoe was accused of having insulted assistant coach Cooper Sannah following instruction for the team to warm-up, claiming the sun was too hot to endure.
On 29 November, Benaiah was also accused of sleeping with a female on camp ahead of the match with Mali, which ended 1-1 on 30 November at the September 28 Stadium. On 30 November, midfielder Harrison was alleged to have insulted the technical staff for substituting him during the match with Mali in the
presence of the head of delegation Charles Massaley.
On 2 December, Saygbe was alleged to have openly said Liberian coaches restrict them from having sex on camp while foreign coaches only restrict their alcohol consumption.Harrison also allegedly insulted Massaley and then accused administrative manager Ebenezer Barclay of deducting their perdiems by US$60 per player at the Sierra Leone-Guinea border on 2 December.
On 3 December, midfielder Padmore was alleged to have incited and led a revolt for the players not to return their passports at the Liberia-Sierra Leone border when it was requested by Barclay for onward submission to Browne.Padmore allegedly said: “If the LFA requests for the US$50, I am willing to pay back.”
It was alleged that goalie Williams told the technical staff that he will never play for any junior teams due to “less attention” while he gets “serious attention” at senior level.
Williams allegedly said he will prefer to play at senior level where he will ride plane and get better incentives then go by road with junior teams and get less incentives.And Jackson is accused of having refused to return the Puma suitcase given to him and members of delegation, which belongs to the LFA.