What a fan­tas­tic foot­ball sea­son!

Lesotho Times - - Sport -

the cur­tain will come down on the 2015/16 pre­mier league sea­son this week­end with ei­ther Li­oli or Mat­lama be­ing crowned cham­pi­ons.

But what a sea­son it has been since it started way back in Au­gust last year!

the most ex­cit­ing part is no one ex­pected the ti­tle race to go to the wire as it has panned out.

I mean, at the start, the likes of Likhopo looked like they would go all the way and chal­lenge for hon­ours, but fell short mid­way through the cam­paign and can now only play for a place among the top-eight teams in the league.

Most fans ex­pected Li­oli to be crowned cham­pi­ons last week­end against rel­e­ga­tion­threat­ened Rovers, but the univer­sity side proved they are a good side by hold­ing Tse Nala to a goal­less draw, putting on hold what­ever cel­e­bra­tions the ty gi­ants had planned.

Last week­end’s re­sults brought Mat­lama back in the ti­tle hunt and it will all go down to the last match of the sea­son this satur­day.

one team that has re­ally dis­ap­pointed when a lot was ex­pected from them is Bantu.

The Mafeteng-based out­fit were hardly set­tled as they chopped and changed coaches and it is no sur­prise A Matšo Mate­bele might fail to make a top-four fin­ish.

And should this hap­pen, the team’s man­age­ment should be a wor­ried lot and must sit down at the end of the sea­son and se­ri­ously in­tro­spect on what went wrong af­ter be­ing on the as­cen­dency over the pre­vi­ous four years.

I was also happy to see strik­ers find­ing the back of the net reg­u­larly this sea­son with the likes of Jane tha­ban­tšo, and Mote­bang sera of Mat­lama and sun­dawana’s Raboana Koloti tak­ing the fight for the Golden Boot award to the very end.

sera leads the charts with 13 goals while Koloti and Tha­ban­tšo have struck 12 times apiece and the trio will con­tinue the bat­tle in this week­end’s do-or-die ties.

An­other side that needs se­ri­ous in­tro­spec­tion is Linare who, un­til last week­end, were in se­ri­ous dan­ger of rel­e­ga­tion.

this is a team with a rich his­tory but needs to put their house in or­der and stop be­ing the laugh­ing stock they have be­come over the last few years.

the bat­tle against rel­e­ga­tion has also been very in­ter­est­ing, but in the end, Mphat­lalat­sane lost the fight and will have to go back to the draw­ing board to see where it all went wrong for them.

But the truth of the mat­ter is Mphat­lalat­sane have been very poor all sea­son when I ex­pected them to be bet­ter af­ter their leg- endary de­fender, Tšepo Hlo­jeng, be­came club pres­i­dent at the start of the cam­paign.

But it was not to be and maybe they will come back a bet­ter team if they ever bounce back to topflight foot­ball.

this was also the sea­son that for­mer Likuena coach, Les­lie notši, re­turned to club foot­ball and took over the reins at Kick­4life.

the ap­point­ment seemed to have worked some magic on the Kick­4life play­ers as the team posted some big re­sults and now stands a chance of qual­i­fy­ing for the LNIG top8 tour­na­ment for the first time in their his­tory.

I would also want to take my hat off to a few coaches I think de­serve praise this sea­son.

Mosholu ‘shoes’ Mokhothu has proved over and over that he is a good coach with his side set to re­tain their league ti­tle and also win­ning the LNIG top8 tour­na­ment.

Coach­ing a big side like Li­oli comes with pres­sure, but Mokhothu has ac­quit­ted him­self very well and man­aged to keep his big and tal­ented squad happy.

Mat­lama coach, Moses Maliehe, has also done ad­mirably well and re­vived a Tse Put­soa side that had been strug­gling to re­assert them­selves as one of the gi­ants of our game.

Like I have said be­fore, I did not ex­pect Tse Put­soa to be as good as they have been this sea­son based on the fact that the coach was new and had lost some ex­pe­ri­enced play­ers who de­cided to search for greener pas­tures.

Mpitsa Marai has also done a mas­sive job in his first sea­son as LCS head-coach.

De­spite their strug­gles of re­cent weeks, Mashesh­ena were re­ally im­pres­sive with a squad mostly com­prised of play­ers new to topflight foot­ball.

Bob Mafoso of sun­dawana also de­serves a pat on the shoul­der as his Butha-buthe side could fin­ish as high as third po­si­tion this cam­paign.

Mafoso did an equally good job at Lik­ila United last sea­son when he helped the pre­mier­ship rook­ies to a Top8 fin­ish, but ev­ery­thing col­lapsed af­ter he left the club.

here he is again this sea­son with sun­dawa- na and def­i­nitely de­serves to be among those vy­ing for the coach-of-the-sea­son award.

But all in all, it was an in­ter­est­ing sea­son that en­ter­tained to the very end.

Mote­bang Sera Jane Tha­ban­tšo

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