LDF, Li­oli re­new ri­valry

Lesotho Times - - Sport - Mikia Kalati

A MOUTH­WA­TER­ING clash of the ti­tans is in the off­ing when old foes LDF and Li­oli lock horns in an Econet Premier League (EPL) en­counter at Ratjo­mose Bar­racks on Satur­day.

The two sides have won 13 league ti­tles be­tween them, with LDF (on eight ti­tles) hav­ing won it more.

Their matches have al­ways been feisty af­fairs and this one is ex­pected to be no less as both seek to re­claim the ti­tle that was won by Bantu last sea­son.

Li­oli coach, Hale­makale Mahlaha, this week told the Lesotho Times that his side has not yet reached the ex­pected lev­els, adding, his strik­ers need to be more ef­fi­cient in front of goal.

He down­played his side’s fail­ure to make big-name sign­ings dur­ing the off-sea­son, say­ing he was con­tent with the qual­ity at his dis­posal.

“We tried to sign a few play­ers but they were over-priced be­yond our bud­get,” Mahlaha said.

“It would have been good to add a few big name play­ers but we still have a com­pet­i­tive team to chal­lenge for hon­ours and with the sup­port of man­age­ment, any­thing is pos­si­ble.”

He said they would still be with­out star player, Tumelo Khut­lang, who has just started re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion af­ter sus­tain­ing an in­jury in the pre-sea­son.

“We will not rush him so that he re­cov­ers fully,” Mahlaha said.

For his part, LDF coach Motheo Mo­hapi said they will treat the game like any other and go all out in search of max­i­mum points.

How­ever, the for­mer Likuena coach be­moaned in­juries to key play­ers telling this pub­li­ca­tion that hit­man, Mo­jela Let­sie, who scored 17 goals in the pre­vi­ous cam­paign was not fully fit.

“He still has a lot of years in him and as a vet­eran, he is wiser and the pil­lar of this team when he is in peak phys­i­cal con­di­tion.

“So the fact that he is bat­tling with in­juries means that our squad has been weak­ened.

“But we are ready to fight for the three points come Satur­day,” Mo­hapi said.

Else­where on Satur­day, San­dawana lock horns with LCS at Ma­put­soe DIFA Ground, Ma­jan­tja are away to Sky Bat­tal­ion and Likhopo take on Kick­4life in the last game of the day.

On Sun­day, two of the coun­try old­est clubs Linare and Mat­lama will go head to head in Ma­put­soe with both seek­ing to bounce back from open­ing day de­feats to Ma­jan­tja and Liphakoe re­spec­tively.

The big­gest game of Sun­day takes place in Quthing where Liphakoe host cham­pi­ons Bantu.

Both teams started the new cam­paign on a high note with the Quthing out­fit shock­ing Mat­lama 1-0 last Satur­day while A Matšo Mate­bele handed new boys Se­fotha-fotha a 4-0 drub­bing.

Tsi­etsi Motšeare and Lehlo­honolo Fothoane grabbed the head­lines, scor­ing on de­but for Bantu while Liphakoe proved that they would be hard to beat as was the case in the sec­ond round of last sea­son.

Fix­tures: Satur­day LDF v Li­oli Likhopo v Kick­4life Sky Bat­tal­ion v Rovers San­dawana v LCS

Sun­day Linare v Mat­lama Liphakoe v Bantu LMPS v Se­fotha-fotha

LDF striker Mo­jela Let­sie (left) vies for pos­ses­sion AGAINST LCS PLAYER IN THIS file PIC­TURE

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