Lioli test for Kick4life
VODACOM Premier League (VPL) pacesetters Kick4life’s title aspirations are set for their sternest test when the log leaders clash with defending champions Lioli in a potentially explosive encounter at LCS on Saturday.
The Leslie Notši mentored Kick4life lead the standings after nine games with 22 points. They have a six point advantage over second-placed Bantu.
Lioli are on position eight with 14 points after eight matches.
However, Notši was quick to shoot down his club’s title ambitions, saying the focus was simply to do better than last season.
“We will not have any special plan for the game against Lioli, but we know very well that they are one of the best teams in the country,” Notši said.
“They have been winning trophies and recently were crowned Independence Cup champions. So morale is very high in their camp and we expect a tough encounter,” he said.
The former Likuena coach said the match would be a good test for his side that has been the most consistent since the start of the 2016/17 season.
“These are the kind of games we want to play to test ourselves against the big boys,” said the Kick4life mentor.
“We will give them the respect they deserve. They have quality individuals but we also have a quality players that are highly motivated,” he said adding their squad of young and experienced players had gelled very well.
Lioli coach Halemakale Mahlaha also said he expected a tough match.
“It is going to be a tough match but we are slowly getting back to our best and from what I have seen from the players this week, I expect them to give everything against Kick4Life,” Mahlaha said.
“The players are showing the right attitude which makes me very happy.
“Our approach will focus on the tactics, the weaknesses and strengths of our opponents in order to get the three points.
“So far so good and I am happy with how the players have responded to my way of doing things because even those that had a negative mentality have come round,” he said.
Mahlaha also said his team had been boosted by the return from injury of last season’s Player of the Season Jerry Kamela and leftback Bokang Sello.
Elsewhere on Saturday, Liphakoe take on LMPS in Quthing while LCS and Rovers clash at LCS Ground.
On Sunday, LDF welcome Bantu to Ratjomose Barracks with both teams having enjoyed a good run of good results in recent weeks.
In another potentially exciting encounter Matlama host Sandawana at Pitso Ground while Linare host Butha Buthe Warriors at DIFA Ground in Maputsoe.
The last match on Sunday will see Likhopo collide with rookies Sky Battalion.
Vodacom premier league fixtures: Saturday Kick4life v Lioli Liphakoe v LMPS LCS v Rovers Sunday Matlama v Sundawana LDF v Bantu Linare v BB Warriors Likhopo v Sky Battalion
LIOLI attacking midfielder Tumelo Khutlang (third from right) is tackled by a Matlama defender during the league match last Sunday.