In the vibrant realm of Liberian football, one name resonates with legendary echoes – George Weah. FIFA World Player of the Year in 1995, the only African to clinch both this prestigious accolade and the Ballon d’Or, Weah stands as an enduring icon among the continent’s football elite. Transitioning seamlessly from his illustrious career with AC Milan and Paris Saint-Germain to the presidency of Liberia, Weah continues to lend fervent support to the national team, the Lone Stars.
Mo Sangare, midfielder for the current Liberian squad, shed light on President Weah’s unwavering commitment to the team. “He comes to almost all of our games,” Sangare revealed in an exclusive interview with FIFA.com. “If we’re at home, and he’s in the country, you know he’ll be there. And every time he’s been to watch us, we’ve won! So yeah, we’re hoping to see him for the World Cup qualifiers.”
Sangare went on to recount personal interactions with the iconic president, emphasizing the camaraderie fostered within the team. “He’s come and spoken to the team a couple of times too. I remember after we beat Sierra Leone at home, he came into the dressing room and invited the whole team to come to his place. We all went in, sat down together, had dinner, talked and took a few pictures together. It’s great to see that from any president, but especially from someone like him, who did so many amazing things as a footballer.”
Despite President Weah’s storied football career, there is an unfulfilled aspiration – playing in a FIFA World Cup™. Liberia’s current team, however, fueled by Sangare’s belief, eyes the upcoming 2026 qualifiers as a tangible opportunity to achieve this elusive goal. Sangare expressed his optimism, stating, “With the group we’re in, and more spaces this time, we feel we have a real chance. But it’s all about showing out on the pitch what we’re capable of.”
As the Lone Stars gear up for their campaign, Sangare emphasizes the importance of a strong start in the upcoming home matches against Malawi and Equatorial Guinea. Playing on home turf, Sangare underscores the significance of fan support, acknowledging, “If we’re going to do what we dream of doing, we’ll need their help.”
Sangare, who currently plies his trade with Scottish Premier League side Livingston, reflects on his arduous journey from a turbulent childhood in Monrovia during the civil war to representing Liberia on the international stage. Despite enduring personal hardships, Sangare is resolute in his pride for Liberian heritage, describing his national team call-up as “a dream come true.”
In the quest for World Cup qualification, Sangare remains steadfast, articulating, “Playing for Liberia was all I ever wanted to do. If I could help this team qualify for the World Cup, that would mean even more.” As the football world watches, Liberia, under the watchful gaze of President Weah, strives to etch a new chapter in its footballing legacy.