Championship Day games will be played at Talen Energy Stadium (1 Stadium Dr., 19013), home of the Philadelphia Union, on Saturday, October 13.
Championship game: #5 Liberia vs. #10 Ivory Coast
The game all 52 teams dreamed of when the tournament started is finally upon us. In the Unity Cup’s third year, we will be seeing some familiar faces in the final. Year 1’s winner Ivory Coast will be facing the defending 2017 champions Liberia.
The African countries continue their dominance in the Philadelphia International Unity Cup, but this year it did not come easy. Liberia was taken to penalty kicks by a tough USA team, and Ivory Coast had to be on their toes after being a man down in the last 20 minutes of their battle against Ireland.
Both teams are solid all around, starting with the stellar coaching of both teams. Both Coach Will from Ivory Coast and Coach Jason from Liberia are organized and bring a set game plan for each match-up. It also helps to have the exceptional talent found on both of these teams.
Ivory Coast’s Seydou Ba has been the talk of the tournament with 16 total goals accumulated, scoring at least a goal in every game. Also starring on Ivory Coast is Koussi N’Guessan, who always makes the right play at center back. With Seydou up top and Koussi in the back, Ivory Coast is a tough match for any team. However, Ivory Coast will be without teammate Yaya Fane after his red card vs. Ireland.
Liberia also has a ton of fire power up front, led by Anthony Allison and Titus Wright. They have a combined 15 goals this Unity Cup. Anthony Allison is a former professional who has a knack for finding the back of the net, and Titus Wright is a force to be reckoned with–he’s got size, speed, and a rocket leg. Daniel Yallah is the star in the midfield for Liberia: He is usually setting up his two star teammates for their goals. With his control, speed, and passing abilities, he really pressures opposing teams’ defenses.
Suspensions will be key: Ivory Coast is down four players due to an accumulation of too many cards. With this is mind, we expect Liberia to come out on top of this evenly matched Unity Cup championship game for the second year in a row.