Matlama vow to keep star midfielder

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…as Bantu bid for unsettled Tšosane

Mikia Kalati

MATLAMA president Paballo Makakole says the club will do everything in its power to retain the services of star midfielder Phafa Tšosane following a bid from Bantu to lure the player.

Rumours coming out of the club are that Tšosane, who is the longest serving Matlama player in the current squad, indicate that the midfielder has requested to leave Tse Putsoa. Indications are that the player is unhappy with his current salary and unfulfilled promises made to him by the club’s previous committee. How much does he earn and what was he promised?

Bantu are also said to be longtime admirers of another of Tse Putsoa midfielder in Jane Thabantšo, who is also nearing the end of his contract with the country’s most decorated side with eight league titles.

Tse Putsoa are second with 32 points in the race for a record ninth league title.

While Thabantšo has continued to play for Tse Putsoa and was among the scorers in the 2-1 win over leaders LCS with 33 on Saturday, Tšosane has been spotted sitting on the stands with the supporters fueling more speculation over his future with the club.

He also missed the previous weekend’s 3-1 victory over Liphakoe at LCS Ground.

Tse Putsoa president admitted that there are unresolved issues involving Tšosane but was not at liberty to go into details.

“The matter that you are talking about is something that is on the table and being discussed at the club,” Makakole said.

“We are still discussing with Tšosane but him not playing in the last two games has nothing to do with the fact that there is a team interested in his services.

“He was not playing because he had asked to be excused for personal commitments. The player is still with us.”

Makakole, who returned to the Matlama executive committee last year after beating Ikarabele Sello for the position of president, stated that Tse Putsoa cannot afford to lose their prized assets as they look to end the long drought for the league title.

“We will do everything in our power to ensure that the matter is resolved that is why I have said the issue is in our office so that we work on it with the players.

“We will find a solution to end the speculation and also report back to our supporters.

“The players have not submitted any request to leave the club but we have a letter from one of the clubs bidding for our players’ services,” he said.

Meanwhile, Bantu general manager Poosela Pule confirmed to the Lesotho Times that they submitted a bid to Matlama over the services of their left footed midfielder but it has since been rejected.

In their response to Bantu, the letter from Matlama read: “Kindly note that Phaha Tšosane is a contracted player of Matlama FC and as such our team does not accept your request”.

“We are also surprised by your allegation that the player’s contract has expired as that remains news to us. However, we… humbly request that you assist us with your source of information regarding the expiry of our player’s contract,” the letter said.

For his part, Tšosane declined to comment and stated that he will break his silence on the matter when the time is right.

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