Claim: FIFA World Rankings under Joseph Nyumah Boakai as VP, Liberia (Lonestar) ranked 135 out of 206 in 2017. Lib ranks 150 in 2023, with George Weah as president.
Verdict: Misleading! FIFA has no data on the claim.
Full Text: The name George Manneh Weah cannot be left unmentioned in the history of international football legends. The Ballon d’Or (World Best), African Best, and European Best were all bagged by him within a year.
The soccer star did not only display the physique of an African footballer, but he also left a legacy that resounds with the iconic expertise that the name George Oppong Weah represents in the field of football.
He raised the image of Liberian football on the world stage FIFA. Also, he took the Lonestar, the national football team of Liberia, to its first and second participation in the African Cup of Nations in 1996 and 2002, respectively.
The Federation of International Football Associations (FIFA), governs football and develops the game worldwide.
Fast forward, the Liberian- born soccer legend entered the game of politics in his homeland, where he is the current president of Liberia, with many expectations from Liberians, that Liberian football will boom under the one-time Ballon d’Or winner, George Weah.
But posting what he claims is the failure of President George Weah in his area of expertise, football, an activist named Martin Kollie has blasted the Liberian leader for retrogressing the soccer sector, instead of elevating the game as a soccer icon.
Kollie compares Liberia’s ranking in the “FIFA World Rankings” under footballing President George Weah, to 150 in 2023, and 135 out of 206, under the watch of former Vice President Joseph Boakai who was not a footballer as Weah.
Verification: FIFA shows that as of December 2017, Liberia ranked 134 out of 205 countries, contrary to Martin Kollie’s claim that the country ranked 134 out of 206 nations on the FIFA World Ranking.
Also, the latest 2023 record on FIFA’s World Ranking additionally displays that, as of April 2023, Liberia ranks 148 out of 211 countries.
We also made efforts to check other Soccerway, which show that in 2017, Liberia ranked 148, and maintained the same in 2023. Football Transfer, a digital football platform that provides news, analysis, statistics, and histories for football’s leading clubs and players, also has statistics that Liberia ranks 148 in 2013 and 2017.
Kolies’s post has so far attracted 323 reactions, 243 comments, and 42 shares as of the time it was captured by The Stage Media, with many different views being expressed about the post, as commenters like Min. Holy Ginger Fab stating, “ you cannot detach Hon. Boakai from the good of the past administration.”
Another commenter, Bob Queminee stated, “the strides, and progresses under the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (EJS) and the Joseph Nyumah Boakai (JNB) stewardship are attributed to JNB, while the failures and deficiencies are disassociated from Boakai, and EJS alone takes the blame.”
Screenshot of Martin’s post
Kollie was also contacted to provide detailed information about his post, and also share the source of his claim, but to date, the message is yet to be responded to.
Screenshot of the message sent to Martin Kollie
Conclusion: FIFA records show Liberia ranked 134 out of 206 countries in 2017, and 148 out of 211 countries in 2023. Martin Kollie’s post that Liberia ranked 135 out of 206 countries in 2017, and 150 in 2023 is misleading.