NEWLY appointed Matlama coach Seephephe Matete begins his reign with a stern test against Vodacom Premier League pacesetters Bantu at Setsoto Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Matete replaced Moses Maliehe last month after the latter left to coach the senior national Likuena team.
The clash is the last match of the first round which could not be played in November last year owing to the non-availability of the Setsoto Stadium at the time.
The Mafeteng outfit occupies pole position on the 14-team league table with 27 points from 12 matches, just a point ahead of second-placed Lioli.
Matlama are seventh with 17 points.
Matete this week told the Lesotho Times that his charges were geared for the test and a victory would go a long way in cementing the team’s status as a giant of the local game.
“Matlama is a big team and obviously supporters are expecting nothing less than maximum points,” Matete said, adding he would not tinker much with the starting eleven.
“We have a very good team with best of the players in our league but their weakest point has been their mental fitness so that is what we have been working on this week. The attitude must change and they must show commitment.”
Matete also called on supporters to be patient, saying the results will start going their way.
For his part, Bantu James Madidilane coach said they were ready for the encounter and would throw everything at their opponents on Saturday.
“It is not going to be an easy match for us because unlike them we only returned on Monday from the Christmas holidays but that is not an excuse because we had known from the start that there will be this break.
“It might have some impact on my team’s performance but then we are a professional team and the players know what is expected from them so they have to double their efforts,” Madidilane said.