Bantu to unveil foreign coach

Bantu to unveil foreign coach

LuciahPhahla

MASERU

Vodacom Premier League giants Bantu are set to unveil South African-born James Madidilane as their new coach, thepost can reveal.

Sources privy to the information say the deal is as good as done with only a few minor details to be ironed out before the big announcement. thepost also has it on good authority Madidilane will be assisted by Sandawana coach Bob Mafoso in what is set to be a star-studded coaching duo in Mafeteng.

Madidilane, a former South Africa Under-23 international, has been tabbed to take over Bantu’s hot-seat following BafokengMohapi’s sacking on Sunday.

He boasts a solid résumé having turned out for the likes of South African Premier League sides Bloemfontein Celtic and Maritzburg United as well as National First Division outfit Roses United as a player.

Currently, Madidilane is a coach in Bloemfontein Celtic’s youth development programme. If confirmed, he would become the first foreign coach to lead a team in the local top-flight.

Mafoso, on the other hand, has become a hot commodity after leading Sandawana to an outstanding fourth-place finish in the 2015/16 premiership campaign. Furthermore, last year Mafoso guided relegated Likila United to sixth place.

The pending arrival of Madidilane and Mafoso comes after Bantu dismissed Mohapi and his technical staff following a disappointing season in which the Mafeteng giants missed out on a top four spot for the first time in five years.

The departure of Mohapi together with his assistants MositoMatela and Caswell Moru was announced through a club statement on Monday.

The club said Mohapi failed to reach the mandate he was given when he took over in January which was to defend the club’s Lesotho National Insurance Group (LNIG) Top 8 title and to secure a top four place in the league. Instead, ‘A MatšoMatebele’ ended the season in seventh place, the club’s lowest placing since it was promoted back to the top-flight in 2009.

“The (Bantu) executive committee has reached a decision to release the technical team after it failed to achieve its mandate which was to win the (LNIG) Top 8, to reach the top four finish, (with winning) the league as a bonus,” read Bantu’s statement.

“They were all released lawfully (and) you will be made aware of the new coach later,” the statement continued.

Speaking to thepost on Monday, Bantu’s communications and marketing manager Motlatsi Mofokeng said the decision to dissolve the technical team was reached during an executive committee meeting last week.

He said Mohapi and his crew were made aware of their fates on Sunday.

“The executive committee met on Sunday last week (May 22) and reached a decision to part ways with the technical team after failing to fulfil their mandate which was to win the (LNIG) Top 8 and to finish among the top four. The last requirement, which was not really a must but a bonus, was to win the league. You will remember that we did not win the (LNIG) Top 8 and we ended the season in seventh position,” Mofokeng said.

Bantu, who won the championship in 2014 and finished in the top two from 2013 to 2015, endured a poor 2015/16 season and Mohapi was the club’s third coach in a tumultuous campaign.

He was appointed in January following the sackings of KatisoMojakhomo in October and Motlatsi Shale in November. Like his predecessors, Mohapi oversaw a torrid time in Mafeteng. In the end, Mohapi’s record in 17 games in charge in all competitions read seven wins, six losses and four draws.

Quizzed on the identity of Bantu’s new technical team, Mofokeng vehemently refused to comment and said the club will make an announcement when all agreements have been reached.

“The club will hold a press conference to announce the new technical team when everything is finalised, I cannot comment further,” he insisted.

 

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