End of era
…as Likhopo part ways with Bokang ‘Lefty’ Mothoana , Tefo ‘Chico’ Maipato, Sefoli Ntoi and Nyakhane Nyakhane.
Likhopo have parted ways with star-players Bokang ‘Lefty’ Mothoana , Tefo ‘Chico’ Maipato, Sefoli Ntoi and Nyakhane Nyakhane.
The midfielders received letters this week informing them their contracts would not be renewed for the 2016/17 season.
The quartet came through the club’s development ranks and their departure from the 2004/5 and 2005/6 league champions marks the end of an era.
Likhopo manager Qamako Mahao yesterday confirmed the departure of the four senior players, saying it made business sense to let them go as age was catching up with them.
“It is true that we have decided to release them from the team; their contracts will not be renewed and as we speak, we have written to all four of them given them such notification. There is nothing new here; teams always sign and offload players. It’s normal and also makes business sense because age is catching up with all of them and they couldn’t even last the full 90 minutes of the match last season,” Mahao said.
“When a contract is over, it is over. They have their clearances with them as we speak and are free to join any team of their choice. It must be clear that we didn’t terminate their contracts but rather decided not to renew them as they have ended.”
Mahao further said by letting the players leave, the club was opening opportunities for youngsters.
“As a team, we have been known for producing good, young players so by keeping ageing players, we will be compromising the team’s future. There is nothing to worry about here; we are still going to produce more of the same quality,” he said.
Ntoi yesterday admitted getting the letter from Likhopo but said he was not ready to talk about the issue.
“I received that letter and my clearance but there is so much happening there that I won’t get into the details, at least not for now,” Ntoi said.
Mothoana, who played for six years in Tunisia with Union Sportive Monastirienne before injury and the club’s lack of funding saw him return home in 2013, also confirmed getting the letter releasing him form the team.
“I only have a letter notifying me that I am released from the team but I am still waiting for my clearance,” he said.
Repeated attempts to talk to Nyakhane and Maipato about the issue were fruitless yesterday.