THE Lesotho Football Association (LeFA) will later this month introduce a national under-15 soccer league, technical director Leslie Notši has said.
Notši made the announcement during the launch of the league launch at Bambatha Tšita Sports Arena yesterday.
The former Matlama goalkeeper said the launch of the league was one of the results of his August 2018 trip to a FIFA technical directors’ workshop in Nairobi, Kenya where he proposed to introduce an under-15 league.
“We have always had the under-15 league although it was disorganised but today we are proud to announce its return,” Notši said.
“I made the proposal when I travelled Nairobi FIFA. Three months later FIFA got back to me and our proposal had been approved.”
Although the definitive dates are yet to be confirmed, Notši said the league would start this month adding that the players have already been registered. He said the players would use their birth certificates or passports for identification purposes to limit cases of age cheating.
“The LeFA executive has also approved the proposal. There are several issues that must be taken care of among them the travel arrangements for the teams. We hope to start the league this month. The players have already been registered using their passports and birth certificates to ensure there is no age cheating. The league will have players born from January 2005 to December 2006.
“This is the pilot phase which will run for four months. We will from the pilot how to improve it next season. We are developing players for our junior national teams and every time there are matches, we will send scouts around the country for the national under-15, 17 and 20,” he said.
For his part, LeFA youth development officer Mohaila Letseka said the league would have 24 teams in four pools.
Pool A would have eight teams, Pool B four teams while Pool C and D have six teams each.
He said the league would be for district squads and not community teams.
“We have 24 teams grouped into four groups and since this is a pilot, the teams will play in a round robin format with one-legged fixtures except in group B where the teams will play each other twice. This has been necessitated by the fact that they are just four teams in the group unlike the other three.
“This project will cost M674 000 for transportation of teams, their meals and paying of coaches,” Letseka said.