Matlama to face SA’s Supersport

MASERU – Matlama Football Club have been drawn against Supersport United of South Africa in the preliminary round of next year’s Caf Champions League.

Tse Putsoa however said this week that they were not fazed by the draw against the South African giants and will be ready come next month.

Matlama’s participation in the continental competition which starts in January will end a two-year self-imposed exile by the country.

Speaking to the Lesotho Times yesterday, Tse Putsoa’s team manager Lebenya Makakole said he was happy with the draw which was conducted in Cairo, Egypt, on Monday.

“It’s a good draw… in the sense that we have a good chance to see them in action week in, week out. We know a lot about them and their style of play, so that is an advantage for us,” Makakole said yesterday.

“All the boys in the camp are excited and they are looking forward to the match and looking forward to progressing to the next round,” he said.

If Matlama negotiate their way past Supersport they will face Africa’s most successful side, Al Ahly of Egypt, in the first round.

However, Makakole said Tse Putsoa were at present focusing on overcoming their opponents in the first round.

“We are focusing on the first match,” Makakole said.

“We have a good squad and we will not make any new additions when the January transfer window opens. Our squad is good enough to beat Supersport.”

Makakole said they expected to host Supersport at Setsoto Stadium.

Matlama, who claimed a record ninth Lesotho championship in May, will look to the experience gained by Litšepe Marabe and Tšoanelo Koetle who were both integral parts of the Makoanyane XI’s magical year.

The Maseru Glamour Boys will also be  heartened by the fact that Supersport United have been struggling this season on the South African domestic scene.

United are lying in 12th place on the 16-team South African Premier Soccer League log with just three wins from their 11 matches this season.

The first leg will be played in Pretoria on the weekend of January 28-30 while the return fixture in Maseru will take place a fortnight later on the weekend of February 12.

Meanwhile, Supersport United coach Gavin Hunt has expressed confidence that his side will dispose of Matlama.

“We should be able to beat Matlama,” Hunt confidently told shortly after the draw.

“I am confident that we can get past Matlama. Hopefully we can play the match at Setsoto Stadium but even then, we should be able to prevail over them.”

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