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Madidilane relishes Nigerian test

by Lesotho Times
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Mikia Kalati

BANTU coach James Madidilane is confident his side will rise to the occasion when they face Enugu Rangers of Nigeria in a CAF Confederations Cup play-off first leg at Setsoto Stadium next weekend.

A Matšo Matebele were automatically relegated into the Confederations Cup after their elimination from the CAF Champions League and have since been drawn against the Nigerian powerhouse.

The winner of the two-legged clash will qualify for the group stages of the competition.

The Mafeteng outfit will host the first leg at Setsoto Stadium on Sunday January 13 with second leg set for the 20th in Nigeria.

The Bantu mentor said they had little information about how Rangers play but they were working flat out to gather information about the Nigerian giants as they prepare for the titanic clash.

“So far we have very little information about our opponents but we will continue to dig for more,” Madidilane told this publication.

“However, at the moment the focus is on our upcoming league match against Likhopo on Saturday and it’s only then that we will switch the focus to Rangers.”

Madidilane said he is heartbroken after missing out on a ticket for the group stages of the CAF Champions League after his side was eliminated 5-2 on aggregate by AS Vita of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). He however, is confident that they have a chance of making up for the loss by upsetting the Nigerian giants.

A Matšo Matebele eliminated Township Rollers of Botswana in the preliminary stage in November last year and in the process re-wrote the history books of local football to become the first team in almost two decades to make it past that stage.

But Madidilane said while he is happy that they made history, they could still do more.

“Of course, it was an achievement for us to make it past the preliminary stage of the Champions League but as a team we feel that there is still more,” Madidilane said.

“We wanted to make it to the group stages of the Champions League but it did not work out and we now have a second chance with the Confederations Cup. It would be a huge achievement for Bantu if we make it and it would also prove that Lesotho has the talent.

“We will be facing tough opponents, who are a well-organised team but we will have to find a plan to go past them and reach the group stages.

“It’s a big competition and making it to the group stages will be a great feat for the club and country. We have to prepare well for the game and fight with everything that we have,” Madidilane said.


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