LIKUENA coach Thabo Senong says his side will use its Sunday friendly against Malawi as a dress rehearsal of how they want to play against Zimbabwe in the return leg of the CHAN qualifiers later this month.
Senong’s charges play Zimbabwe on 20 October 2019 at Setsoto Stadium. The side has a mammoth task of overturning a deficit after losing 3-1 in Harare last month.
In preparation for the do or die tie, Likuena play the Flames of Malawi on Sunday.
“It’s going to be a good practice match for us,” Senong said adding: “It is FIFA week and we hope Malawi brings their best possible squad so that it provides us with a good test for our boys”.
“We have decided not to call our international players for the friendly as they won’t be playing in the CHAN.”
Senong said they have only made a few changes to the squad to ensure they do not disrupt the team’s rhythm.
“We have already seen Zimbabwe’s strengths and weaknesses, so we are going to use the Sunday friendly as a rehearsal of how we want to play against Zimbabwe. This means we won’t make many changes as that might disrupt the rhythm.
“Malawi are likely bringing a strong squad with the like of Gabadinho Mhango (Orlando Pirates) and Gerald Junior Phiri (Baroka).”
Senong said they have also been working hard to improve their strikers’ confidence.
“I still believe we can do well; we can win the game. The away goal has given us hope. We just have to ensure that we play better in the attacking third, improve the confidence in the box and finish the chances that we create.
“We have been having extra sessions with our strikers to ensure they improve. We are working on the confidence because they play in a very demanding position, so they must be mentally fit since the expectations are high.
“Coming back to the Sunday match, it is not one where every player will get a chance because we do not want to disturb the team’s rhythm,” Senong said.