Brilliant Jabateh Rallies CSKA Draw Against Madrid
By Wleh Bedell
Liberia's new boy-wonder Sekou Jabateh Oliseh was in
electrifying form as he rallied his CSKA Moscow side to get
on level pecking with nine times European champions Real
Madrid in a round of sixteen clash in Moscow.
Jabateh who came on midway in the second period for the
Nigerian Ahmed Musa ignited the game for his side as he made
life very difficult for the Pottuguese full back Fabio
Coentrao with his mesmerising skills, subtle moves and
Jabateh's introduction put Madrid on the back foot as the
home side became more adventurous.
Watching the game via DSTV, the Nigerian trained-Danish
promoted-Russian based Liberian international made light
weather of Coentrao as he brought him in and out as the
Madrid man was seen hapless on the synthetic turf before
Jabateh unleashed a sublime cross in the path of his Ivorian
Replay showed a furious Jose Mourinho furious on the side
line as a result of the 21 year old boy- wonder explosive
skills against Coentrao. Matter would become worse when the
Portuguese fouled the Liberian making him to be awarded a
yellow card as Jabateh was in imperious form.
Mourinho after introducing Ricardo Kaka for Jose Calejon
later made a negative substitution as his side went on the
back foot due to the Moscow outfit game being raised. One of
Madrid's trident strike force member, Mesut Ozil, was
bsubstituted for the Spanish international Raul Albiol as
the Premier Liga leaders sat back and played on the break.
But, a vintage Jabateh with the aid of the sublime Japanese
Honda rallied in the last 30 seconds of the match to make
their side get the leveler through Pontus Wernbloom whose
effort beat Iker Casillas to cancel a Christaino Ronaldo's
28th minute strike.
The return leg is at the Santiago Bernabeau on March 14 with
CSKA Moscow needing a win to sail through, a tall order
But, upon the blast of the referee's whistle to end the
match the whole of Monrovia errupted into ecstasy as people
jubilated for Jabateh's exploits. There were all kinds of
songs with some singing "Jabateh the new Weah", "Jabateh
mother thank you it is good to born a boy child", one other
hilarious fan quickly told a colleague "Barca wants Jabateh"
while others have already started comparing him with the
It has being party all night in Monrovia and reports from
other parts of the country say the party is even hotter.
The great form of Sekou has certainly inspired his
countrymen with some saying they are fans of CSKA Moscow and
no other European side. Some wish that Jabateh will be
bought by a top European club due to such a virtuoso
performance against a star-saturated Madrid.
Jabateh is no doubt the new face of Liberian football as far
as seeing or mentioning a Liberian player at the apex of
European football. Since the expolits of Weah especially
during the 1994/95 champions league where he ended as top
scorer in the competition with eight goals and helped his
Paris Saint Germain outfit stunned the bookmakers by beating
the likes of Spartak Moscow, Bayern Munich and Barcelona,
all of whom Weah scored against, Liberians have being
yearning a player of their own emulate Weah's success story
and it seems a certain youngster in Sekou Jabateh Oliseh has
come to stay.