League title race goes to wire
THE race for the Econet Premier League title will go to the wire this weekend as the defending champions, Bantu, face third placed LCS in a match that could help decide the 2018/19 championship.
Bantu wade into the match after a good performance during the long Easter weekend having clinched victories over Majantja and Liphakoe to cut Matlama’s lead at the top of the table to just five points.
LCS, on the other hand, failed to rise to the occasion and dropped two points after a goalless draw with Lioli and in the process lost the second position to Bantu.
Matlama gave a five star performance with a 5-0 demolition of relegation threatened Majantja.
Tse Putsoa captain, Mabuti Potloane, who is looking to win his first league title, told the Lesotho Times that the country’s most decorated outfit cannot afford to put a foot wrong in their four remaining matches.
“It’s important is for us to maintain the same standards that we have showed in recent games; we do not have to do anything differently,” Potloane said.
“Of course, the approach to any particular game will always be different but we have to keep grinding results to win the league title.”
The Tse Putsoa skipper said being on top of the Econet Premier League table and moving towards winning their first league title in a decade has not brought any pressure on his squad.
“Nothing has changed as far as our goals are concerned. The plan from the start of this season was to have a successful campaign and win trophies.
“We have always been a unit working together with our coaches with the same goal, which was to do well this season.
“The players have remained humble and know that they have to work hard to win the title.”
Potloane said it will be a dream come true for him to lift his first premier league title at the end of this season.
“As a football player, it has always been a dream to win one of the country’s coveted trophies and now that it looks like that dream is becoming a reality, we have to continue working hard to make it possible,” he said.
For his part, Bantu coach James Madidilane urged his charges to fight to the end admitting that Matlama are closer to the title.
“It is important for us to win all our remaining matches. As to what will happen, we will only know at the end of the season.
“It’s no longer in our hands but we must win our remaining games. If Matlama win all their matches, let them be the champions because they deserve it. They have been consistent winning their matches.
“We want to finish the season on a high note and can only do that if we win all our matches, which is important to us as the defending champions,” Madidilane said.
Madidilane, who led A Matšo Matebele to back-to-back league titles since joining the club three seasons ago, said he is happy with the manner in which that his players have responded in their effort to close the gap between them and Matlama.
Bantu were rampant during the Easter weekend beating Majantja 6-1 and Liphakoe 3-1 to close the gap between them and Tse Putsoa to just five points.
“I’m very impressed, I’m happy with the performance.
“As much as we are not giving up, we know that we have done well so far and if it does not work, we still have next season to get things right.
“As things stand right now, our chances are very slim because Matlama have been winning their matches. To win it, we will need them to drop points by losing a match which I think is impossible. I think the only team that could give them a problem is Sefotha-fotha.
“We just have to continue doing what is right and see what happens with Matlama but as things stand, the title is in their hands,” he concluded.
Bantu have a chance of closing the gap to just two points if they beat LCS at the weekend as Matlama will only be in action on Sunday when they face Galaxy in Maputsoe.
Econet Premier League weekend fixture
Bantu v LCS
Sefotha-fotha v LDF
Kick4Life v Liphakoe
Majantja v Linare
Galaxy v Matlama
Majantja v Linare
Lioli v LMPS