Koetle delighted to be back


Mikia Kalati

LIOLI midfielder Tšoanelo Koetle is delighted to be back in the fold for the national team after his recent call-up into the squad that will face Cape Verde in the crucial 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier on Sunday.

The talented midfielder has returned to the Likuena squad after over a year having last played in in the 1-1 draw against Tanzania in June 2017 in the first qualifier.

Koetle spent months on the side-lines after he was accused of refusing to undergo a doping test in 2017.

He was set to appear before a disciplinary hearing that was to be convened by the Lesotho National Olympic Committee (LNOC) in its capacity as the local National Anti-Doping Organisation (NADO).

The midfielder was in the process also side-lined from the national duty pending the finalisation of the case.

However, Koetle returned to action at club level after the January transfer window and was a late addition to the Likuena squad after impressive displays.

“I’m happy to be back and prove to the country what I can do for the national team,” Koetle said.

“I’m fighting for my place in the team and I want to help the country qualify for the Africa Cup of Nations because I believe the coaches picked me knowing what I can do for the team.”

The talented midfielder admitted that his game suffered a lot while he was on suspension and is now under pressure to make up for the lost time.

“Being away has put me under a lot of pressure but I also pushed myself a lot during the suspension. I’m working hard to win my place back in the starting line-up and the spirit is very high in the squad because we know each other a lot as players.

“We are always together, be it while in camp with the national team or during our free time and that makes it easy for us to develop an understanding as a team,” he said.

The Tse Nala midfielder says he feels good to be back playing for his country again and is confident that he can help the side qualify for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations to be staged in Egypt later this year.

“Coming back to play after a long time on the side-lines gives me a great feeling. I love football and being on the field of play makes me happy all the time,” Koetle said.

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