SWALLOWS suffered yet another embarrassing loss last weekend as they were thumped 0-4 by Lioli at Ratjomose Ground.
This was the second loss for the Mazenod outfit in three matches with one being a goalless draw with Liphakoe a fortnight ago.
In their opening match of the season, Swallows were walloped 0-6 by Matlama at Setsoto Stadium. After the Lioli loss, the Motebang Makhetha coached side has conceded 10 goals in three matches but is yet to score this season.
Last season Swallows survived the chop in the last match of the campaign courtesy of a 1-0 win over LCS which saw them move from 14th to 12th.
Several on and off the field factors contributed to their poor season and one would have thought that the Mazenod outfit has learnt its lessons and will return a better side this season.
For every team, it is always wise to collect as many points as possible in the first round of the season as history has proven in previous seasons that the second round is tougher.
There is no doubt that the going will get tougher for Makhetha and his troops if they continue to drop points in this fashion and as it is, they are no course to fight relegation come the end of the season.
I watched Swallows’ first match against Matlama and I was really surprised to see their approach to the game going pound for pound with the reigning champions.
In as much as most coaches now want their teams to play free flowing football, enjoying possession, I think one needs to consider the calibre and the strengths of the team they will be playing.
My understanding is that when coaches prepare for their next games, they also try to analyse how the opponents’ style play either as a team or analysing individuals.
So, I was baffled to see Swallows wanting to take the game to Matlama who have a much better quality than theirs. With this route, Makhetha’s side was bound to struggle and it wasn’t a shock that Matlama scored a hefty six.
Lioli is also one of the top teams in our league blessed with quality and experienced players and it was always going to be tough for Swallows to get maximum points from the game.
The best they could have done was to play to get a draw rather than playing an open game, which at the end, again cost them three points.
Every team has its own approach to different matches and one would have thought that Swallows has learnt its lessons.
I don’t see them surviving this year if they continue on this same track. It is time Makhetha becomes realistic and realises that there are some teams against whom you can never play an open game. Against the top team, the task should simply be to remain behind the ball and try to catch their opponents on the break.
It happens everywhere in the world; you cannot see West Ham United playing an open game against Manchester City. Manchester City has better quality compared to West Ham in all aspects.