Showdown at Setsoto

Showdown at Setsoto

Luciah Phahla

. . . as Matlama, Lioli clash once again

Maseru – The turf is set to suffer when juggernauts Lioli and Matlama clash at Setsoto Stadium on Sunday in a much anticipated Vodacom Premier League showdown.

It is the second meeting between the arch-rivals this season after their heavyweight Independence Cup final clash two weeks ago which Lioli won.

Two weeks, however, is a long time in football and it is Lioli who go into this weekend’s tie under pressure.

On Sunday, ‘TseNala’ suffered the shock of their lives courtesy of a 2-1 league defeat at the hands of Rovers in Roma.

Lioli communications and marketing manager TšelisoLerata admitted they undermined Rovers and it cost them. He said the champions only started playing like a team that wanted to win after Rovers took the lead.

The defeat has plunged Lioli to fifth place in the Vodacom Premier League with 14 points from eight games. Matlama have leapfrogged them. ‘TsePutsoa’ are third with 15 points and also have a game behind.

Lerata said Lioli cannot undermine Matlama and are going into the game looking to win.

“The game against Matlama is one of the biggest games in the country and we cannot undermine them,” Lerata told thepost yesterday.

“This is a kind of game where one cannot predict the outcome, just like when we are playing Bantu. But our intentions, especially after this loss (against Rovers) are clear; we have to win.”

He added: “When going into this game form doesn’t count. It doesn’t matter how you have been playing all along because things can change any minute. But, if you look at the history between these two teams, Lioli has an upper hand.”

Matlama go into the clash highly motivated after a convincing 4-0 victory over Lesotho Correctional Service on Sunday. However, Lerata believes Lioli’s loss to Rovers was a blessing in disguise.

“Maybe this loss is a blessing in disguise for us, maybe it’s better that we lost to Rovers rather than to Matlama,” he said.

“You could see against Rovers that we were still in an Independence Cup hangover and we undermined our opponents. It was only after they scored a goal that we looked like a team that wanted a win. That’s when we started attacking non-stop, unfortunately we lost,” he continued.

In other games this weekend, log leaders Kick4Life will visit Rovers on Saturday looking to extend their lead at the top. The Old Europa outfit leads the premiership with 19 points, three points ahead of second-placed Bantu.

Weekend Fixtures

Saturday

Rovers vs. Kick4Life (Roma)

LDF vs. Liphakoe (Ratjomose)

Sunday

Lioli vs. Matlama (Setsoto Stadium)

Linare vs. LMPS (MaputsoeDiFA stadium)

Likhopo vs. LCS (LCS)

Sky Battalion vs. Bantu (TBC)

Butha-Buthe Warriors vs. Sundawana (BB)

Log Standings

P W D L GF GA GD Pts.
1 Kick4Life 8 6 1 1 19 8 11 19
2 Bantu 7 5 1 1 13 3 10 16
3 Matlama 7 4 3 0 10 3 6 15
4 Sky Battalion 8 5 0 3 11 8 3 15
5 Lioli 8 4 2 2 9 4 5 14
6 LMPS 8 4 2 2 7 4 3 14
7 LDF 8 3 4 1 6 4 2 13
8 Liphakoe 8 3 2 3 9 10 -1 11
9 LCS 8 2 4 2 8 10 -2 10
10 Sundawana 8 2 3 3 6 9 -3 9
11 Linare 8 1 2 5 9 13 -4 5
12 Rovers 8 1 2 5 6 15 -9 5
13 Likhopo 8 1 1 6 3 10 -7 4
14 Butha-Buthe Warriors 8 0 1 7 4 21 -17 1

 

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