Makoanyane XI COSAFA squad to be announced today

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Leemisa Thuseho

LESOTHO national Under-20 men’s soccer coach, Bafokeng Mohapi is today expected to announce his final 2020 COSAFA Championship squad.

The 19-man f squad will travel to South Africa on Sunday for the tournament which will run from 3 to 13 December.

“By Thursday (today) we will have the final squad of 19 players,” Mohapi told Lesotho Times this week.

Mohapi added that their preparations have been marred by several challenges among them the players’ school engagements which have hindered them from training adequately.

“Due to players’ school commitments, we are struggling to get all the players at once. We are also forced to train in the afternoon only. Some of the players are not staying in Maseru and that is also a challenge.”

He is currently working with 24 players.

Once the players start the final camp, he hopes the Lesotho Football Association (LeFA) will engage a tutor who will assist the player with their studies including during the tournament.

Lesotho is in Group A along with long-time rivals South Africa and Zimbabwe. Mozambique are also in the same group.

Makoanyane XI will play Mozambique on 3 December before facing South Africa on the 6th. Their last group match will be against Zimbabwe on the 8 December.

Only the top team in each pool and the best-placed runners-up will advance to the semi-finals. The tournament will also be used qualifiers for the Under-20 African Cup of Nations (AFCON) scheduled for Mauritania in February and March 2021.

The AFCON tournament will in turn serve as the qualifiers for the 2021 FIFA Under-20 World Cup pencilled in for Indonesia from 20 May to 12 June 2021. The top four sides in the African competition will head for the global finals.

In the past two editions, Makoanyane XI failed to go beyond the group stages only reaching the finals in 2005 and 2017.

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