Marai must keep Likuena post

Lesotho Times - - Sport -

LCS coach Mpitsa Marai (pic­tured) was a late ad­di­tion to the Likuena tech­ni­cal team ahead of the Cosafa tour­na­ment cur­rently un­der­way in Namibia, re­plac­ing Caswell Moru who failed to travel with the team due to work com­mit­ments. The for­mer Likuena de­fender hit the ground run­ning as part of the na­tional foot­ball team’s as as­sis­tant co coach as th the team’s good re­sults in Nami Namibia sug­gest h he struck a good re­la­tion­ship w with head­coach Moses Malie Maliehe. Be­fore the to tour­na­ment started on 11 June, Lik Likuena had conceded at least one go goal in each of the five matches they h had played since Maliehe took over the hot-seat, but things changed for the bett bet­ter at the re­gional tour­na­ment as the team k kept clean sheets in all their three group-sta group-stage matches. This im­prove­ment must surely h have some­thing to do with the fact that Ma Marai was a top de­fender him­self and last sea sea­son made an im­pres­sive start to life as a premier league head head-coach coach as he took LCS t to a third­place fin­ish on the 14-team log. While tech­ni­cally, Moru is still the na­tional team as­sis­tant coach, the Le­sotho Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion (LEFA) must now make a de­ci­sion about who is the best man to as­sist Maliehe go­ing for­ward.

An­other thing the as­so­ci­a­tion must do to main­tain the stan­dards Likuena set in Namibia is mak­ing sure this group of play­ers re­mains to­gether and is given all the as­sis­tance they need to con­tinue grow­ing.

Most of them are in their mid-20s and can surely con­tinue serving the na­tional team for the next five years.

I also feel Marai has done enough to re­tain his po­si­tion in the na­tional team as this is the first time the team has gone three matches on the trot with­out con­ced­ing a goal.

I know this is not the first time Likuena have gone beyond the group stage of the re­gional tour­na­ment but the way they went about it in Namibia was really im­pres­sive and showed the in­valu­able in­put of ev­ery sin­gle mem­ber of the tech­ni­cal staff.

There is no doubt Moru is one of our young coaches with the po­ten­tial to go places, I feel he is too busy to con­tinue as­sist­ing Maliehe and should there­fore, make way for Marai.

His dif­fer­ent re­spon­si­bil­i­ties in­clude be­ing the vice-pres­i­dent of the Le­sotho Sports and Re­cre­ation Com­mis­sion (LSRC) and pres­i­dent of the Le­sotho In­sti­tute of Sports As­so­ci­a­tions (LISA).

That, for me, is too much of a load to carry, let alone also be­ing an as­sis­tant coach of a se­ri­ous na­tional team.

Be­cause of this heavy work­load, it means he can­not spend a lot of time coach­ing foot­ball which Marai does since he is full­time with LCS.

All in all, there are a lot of pos­i­tives to be taken from Likuena’s Cosafa cam­paign and next year, we should aim for the tro­phy it­self.

The big­gest prob­lem with our na­tional teams has been their fail­ure to main­tain stan­dards and go a step fur­ther af­ter a promis­ing cam­paign.

The fact that we reached the Cosafa fi­nal in 2000 and have not achieved that again means we have gone back­wards over the years and it is time we got it right and hope­fully, Maliehe is the man to take us to the Prom­ises Land.

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