Like Pele of Brazil, George Weah Must Give Himself Sometime

By Emmanuel Obed Towouh

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia

April 19, 2004

Yes, man . . . I don’t know about you but I saw that game live on TV. The King dribbled an entire squad to score an impossible goal. It was AC Milan vs. Verona.

He nearly did it to Juventus. Zidane and Egar Davis of both Juventus felt like crawling maggots after Weah got done with them. In that game, Weah had three perfect penalties. He was denied two penalties and was awarded the third penalty.

However, the third penalty didn’t go down without a cost. George Weah headed for the fourth penalty, or goal but was forced down right outside the goal keeper’s line. That was the only thing the Juventus defenders could do. The referee rushed over Weah, who was laying on the ground, rolling and nursing his injured ankles. That was the perfect opportunity the referee wanted. Before all knew it, it was a red card against Weah for faking a foul. It was shocking to everyone.

That shocking incidence knocked me off my seat and had me screaming at the TV as if the referee could hear me. What the referee considered a foul was replayed every five minutes as the game progresses. Now, what does that tell you? You know too well and I know that means the referee took off a dangerous player who was pain in Juventus’ behind.

Italians being what they are, Juventus was at the edge of being disgraced by a loner and the referee couldn’t allow a world-class team like Juventus flooded with the best the world could gather falls to one man twice in roll. During the first encounter, Weah single handily whipped Juventus two-to-nothing breaking Juventus’ five years record over AC Milan.

George Weah is still my kind of guy in football. He will always be not because he’s a Liberian. Like his compatriots in the world of football, George Weah had set a record no player will easily attempt for decades. Weah opened the eyes of those of us who missed happenings of the past. He brought back great football for those of us who were not born during the era of Pele, Eric Cartona, George Best, Maradona etc.

In view of the above, as I am about to bring forth the main reason behind this article, I am making it clear that I have respect for Mr. Weah. He’s a true patriot, who went against all odds to bring joy to his country. He served as a financial pipeline giving hope to the Lone Star, and the Liberian population who sees football as a therapy that has the propensity to heal the wounds of war.

We all hail the king. But gentlemen, let us take a look at this issue from a rational point of view. It is a crystal clear that playing the game is one thing, and administration another. Controlling human beings with various ideology is far too different from dribbling single handily from one end of the playing pitch to another. I have followed Weah not only from his playing but also his relationship with fellow teammates and the administrative bodies of the various teams he enacted with. I gave weah an “A” on the playing field but I have problems with grading his relationship outside the playing field.

You can’t dribble another man’s or woman’s idea in offices by over ruling what they think is right without tangible and/or explanatory reasons simply because yours sounds good to your own ears, or because you’ve done things other can’t easily do.

To lead the Liberian house of football, Weah must be schooled about administrations and how to deal with human beings and accept ideas of others even if they don’t sound right. He must take at least few classes in Business Administration, Psychology, Interpersonal Relationship, Professional Development, Public Speaking etc. These are all brilliant college courses that Weah can study one course at a time from the comfort of his home.

Administration is centered around human beings in an office framework on a day-to-day basis, and not football on a playing pitch. I think Weah must give himself sometime before venturing in the LFA. Coaching is command structured, and if one does personality study on Weah, he or she will suggest that Weah will do better being a coach.

Apart from the administrative deficiencies Weah possesses, if Liberians insist that Weah becomes the FA president simply because of his sacrifices to Lone Star, the money he has, and the contact points he has established, I am opening another area that you can consider in your decision making.

Mr. Snow gave up the FA position because he had too many things going on, and that defines the Law of Increasing Opportunity Costs. The costs of producing more of one thing usually leads to the costs of producing other things people need. Snowe yields to the force of this simple economic law because he was operating inside his Production Possibility Frontier and trying to reach that which is unattainable.

Even though not like Weah, Mr. Snowe has the money for use on the FA. What he never had was the cost of time. Time plays an important factor in every aspect of life whether there is money or no money. Once you have the time for anytime, you’ll accomplish it. If not, that’s when opportunity costs come into play. You’ll find yourself paying close attention to areas of interest leaving those that are considered important to those you serve..

Weah engagements with the world governing body, the UN, are many and there will be too little time for the FA. He’s an Ambassador for UNICEF and always on the calling list. I think Weah must give himself sometime like Pele of Brazil before contesting the FA presidency. The less his engagements, the more foci he will be in accomplishing the FA’s objectives. Well, Maybe I am one of those guys who procrastinate for big office position.

I have always admired Mr. Weah and I’ll always do but administration is another issue. It requires some form of academic coaching. Weah will help himself best in administering the FA if he surrounds himself with people who are administratively inclined in various fields of study like Accounting, Business Administration, Information Technology, Economic etc. let no one underestimate the power of these disciplines.

Again, this is my personal opinion. It is not a strategy designed to question the administrative capabilities of Mr. Weah. I stand to be correct on this issue.

Hail to the King.