LIKUENA coach Moses Maliehe says he will rely on his tried and tested players for the upcoming COSAFA Cup scheduled for Durban from 25 May to June 8 2019.
The national team coach said this year’s edition of the regional competition is going to be more competitive as the likes of South Africa, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Madagascar will use it to prepare for their respective 2019 Africa Cup of Nations appearance hence they will also use their experienced players.
After reaching the semi-finals of the competition for the last two-years, Likuena are once again expected to start the competition in the quarterfinals.
“That’s our plan (to use experienced players) because we have realised that most of the teams are going to use their tried and tested players in preparation for AFCON,” Maliehe told the Lesotho Times.
“We should not do things too differently compared to the other teams. We have to take our best team to compete in the COSAFA Cup?
The Likuena mentor stated that he will be looking to improve on their last year’s third place finish and he can only do that when he has his best players.
“I think there is a big chance that we will face one of the four teams that have qualified for the Africa Cup of Nations in the quarterfinals and we have to be prepared to compete.
“That can only happen when we have our best players. We cannot gamble because we are sure of coming up against one of the powerhouses in the region.
“That could be South Africa, Zimbabwe or Madagascar as the three teams ranked ahead of us in the region at the moment. So, we have to be prepared for any of these teams,” he said.
He indicated that the likes of Tshwarelo Bereng, Nkoto Masoabi and Tumelo Khutlang, who are playing their football in South Africa will all be part of the team.
“Yes, Bereng did not get a chance to play in this tournament last year but has a chance of playing this year. We will also have our foreign based players in the team.
“It’s a goal for every coach and his team do well in every competition. We want to go as far as the finals but we know that it will not be easy.
“The fact that we will once again start the competition in the quarterfinals is no mean feat. We worked for it and will be going for an improvement in this year’s tournament,” he said.
Maliehe said his hopes to start the preparations next week and go into full time camp once they league season ends.