Midfielder Teboho Lekhooa is back at Lioli after missing the first half of the season due to a self-imposed sabbatical.
The former national under-20 captain came through Lioli’s junior ranks and was registered with the team on transfer deadline day last Friday.
However, Lekhooa (20) will not play in the African Champions League as Lioli had already registered their squad for the continental tournament.
Lioli coach, Mosholu ‘Shoes’ Mokhothu, on Tuesday told the Lesotho Times that Lekhooa was being assessed to see if he was in shape to be thrown into the fray immediately.
“Lekhooa is back after missing the first round of the season due to personal issues,” Mokhothu said.
“We are assessing his progress to see if he could be ready to play anytime soon, although I was surprised to see how quickly he is responding to training.
“He remains a quality player although he will not be able to play in the Champions League as the deadline for player-registration closed way back in November.”
Meanwhile, the Lesotho Football Association (LeFA) on Monday announced that preparations for Lioli’s Champions League preliminary round matches against Vital’ô Football Club of Burundi were on track.
Lioli host the Burundi giants on 14 February in the first-leg fixture with the return match set for 28 February in Bujumbura.
LeFA secretary general, Mokhosi Mohapi, said tickets for the match go on sale next Monday, and that the association would be in charge of the team’s expenses for the matches. Mohapi was not in a position to give exact figures but said LeFA could spend up to M900 000 on Lioli for the two matches.
“Everything is in place for the match and tickets for the match will go on sale on Monday next week at all Shoprite stores around the country,” Mohapi said.
“Tickets will be M30 for the Open Stand and M40 for the Royal Stand.”
Lioli vice-president, Mothoalo Mothoalo, on the other hand, said he was confident that Tse Nala would do the country proud because they have had good preparations for the continental showcase.
“We feel that our preparations are on track because we played friendly games against the likes of Bloemfontein Celtic of South Africa. Our league campaign here has also been helpful as well as the LNIG competition,” he said.
Mothoalo also announced Tšeliso Lerata as their new communications and marketing officer. Lerata takes over from Moeketsi Pitso, who passed away late last year.