Linare vice-captain dies
LINARE and the football fraternity at large are mourning the death of defender Lebohang ‘Mabizela’ Matamane, who died on Sunday in a car accident. He was born on 11 December 1984. Linare public relations officer, Refiloe Makhobotloane, told the Lesotho Times that Matamane’s death came as a shock to everyone at the club. The defender wore the captain’s armband in last Saturday’s 0-1 loss to Kick4life.
According to Makhobotloane, Matamane passed away at Maseru Private Hospital after he had the accident in Peka on his way from Leribe to Maseru.
“It’s a very sad situation because he played on Saturday in the 0-1 loss to Kick4life. He was actually the vice-captain of our team, but was wearing the armband at the weekend,” Makhobotloane said.
“The other sad part was he was the only one among the five people in the car, who died. He was in the company of his brother, his son and two other friends.”
The Linare spokesperson also said Matamane’s teammates are struggling to come to terms with the loss of their colleague.
“It has come as a shock to everyone and our players are in deep pain because of his personality and the role he played at the club,” said Makhobotloane.
“I doubt if they will be in the right frame of mind to play at the weekend, but that decision will depend on the football authorities.
“What we will do as a club is to get psychological help to assist the players overcome the grief,” he said.
Makhobotloane also told the Lesotho Times that the management had already met with the family of their late player to pass their condolences as well as work together to prepare for his burial.
Linare captain, Napo Sehloho said Matamane was like a brother to him.
“When he joined Linare, I was still a youngster and he was more experienced having played for Rovers before. He was always there to offer me advice during the tough times,” Sehloho said.
“We had become very close so much that I could even share my personal issues with him.
“We will all remember him for being a humble character as well as a leader.”
Sehloho said they are all in pain and he had to call each and every one of his teammates to come for training since they heard the tragic news.
“This is a big blow. We have not been playing well of late, but none of the players came for training on Monday after we heard about his death,” said the attacking midfielder.
“This is more painful to me because he was my vice-captain, but it was him showing me the way as an older brother, but I will forever cherish what he did to help me become a better player and a wiser human being,” he said.
Former Linare captain, Mabuti Potloane now at Matlama, said he was shattered with the passing away of his ex-teammate.
“It’s still a shock to me that Mabizela is no more. We were very close at Linare and even when I left last season. It is very painful to even think that he is no more,” Potloane said.
“I try not to think about it because it makes me sad as I’m struggling to believe that he is indeed gone.”
The defender, who is survived by his wife, son, parents and siblings, joined Linare from Rovers in 2009.