Linare eye Sundawana scalp
Linare coach, Freese ntene, has urged his charges to end their inconsistency by taking all the three points on offer when they face Sundawana in a Vodacom Premier League match scheduled for ButhaButhe on Saturday.
ntene has described the weekend clash as a “must win” for the Hlotse-based outfit, and believes a loss would be catastrophic for his side whose third-place Premiership finish last season earned them the adoration of the football fraternity.
But after an indifferent start to the season, Linare find themselves in unfamiliar territory and the subject of intense debate by pundits and their fans perplexed by the sudden change of fortune.
according to ntene, Sundawana who are finding the going equally tough in the topflight league, present Linare with a good chance to turn the tide and start living up to their fans’ expectations.
“This is a very important match for us as the three points will boost our chances of survival following a poor start to the season,” said ntene, whose team lies eighth on the 14team Vodacom Premier League table nine matches into the 2014/15 campaign.
Ntene further said what gives him confidence is the availability of all his players for selection, although first-choice goalkeeper, Dyke Tšiu, might not play as he is mourning his mother who recently passed away.
“all our players who had been side-lined through injury have since recovered, and I feel it is time we became consistent and push for a place among the top four teams as we head towards the end of the season’s first round.”
“It is very important that we collect maximum points in our remaining fixtures to end the first round on a high note. But i must say, Sundawana are a very strong team and we should not underestimate them or else they will shock us.”
In another fixture set to produce fireworks on Saturday, log-leaders Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) host fourth-placed Lesotho Correctional Services (LCS) at Ratjomose Barracks.
After suffering their first defeat in eight matches last Sunday following a 3-0 hammering by Lioli, LDF coach Malefetsane Pheko is confident his team will bounce back in style against Masheshena, as LCS are affectionately known.
“We have since put that defeat behind us, but at the same time, the heavy loss has helped us rectify our mistakes,” Pheko said.
“Our matches against LCS have always been very difficult and we will have to be at our best to beat them.
“LCS have been very impressive since the season started and our boys would have to dig deeper to get the better of LCS come Saturday.”
Meanwhile, on Sunday, two of the country’s top guns, Matlama and Bantu, renew their rivalry at Setsoto Stadium, in arguable the pick of the weekend matches.
A Matšo Matebele currently occupy second spot on the Premiership table and would be hoping to revenge the Independence Cup semi-final defeat they suffered against Matlama at Setsoto in October. On the other hand, Matlama would be hoping to bounce back in style following a 1-0 defeat to Sundawana a fortnight ago away from home.
Full weekend fixtures Saturday:
Sundawana v Linare (Butha-buthe), LDF v LCS (Ratjomose Barracks), Lioli v Mphatlalatsane (Setsoto Stadium). Sunday: Matlama v Bantu (Setsoto Stadium), Qoaling Highlanders v Likila United (Qoaling), LMPS v Likhopo (PTC Ground), Kick4life v Nyenye Rovers (LCS Ground).
Linare is aiming to outsmart Sandawana in their weekend Premier League encounter in Butha-buthe.