Lioli in big trouble

Lioli in big trouble

MASERU – Lioli assistant coach Mosholi Mokhothu admits the team’s Econet Premier League struggles are starting to affect the players as they are no longer able to concentrate for a full 90 minutes during a game. Mokhothu acknowledged Lioli have to start winning games to relieve mounting pressure on the team and to get out of the difficult position they find themselves in.
Mokhothu was speaking after Lioli suffered yet another league defeat last Saturday this time falling 3-1 to rivals Matlama, a loss which unsurprisingly did not go down well in Teyateyaneng.
The setback leaves Lioli in eighth place in the Econet premiership, 14 points off first place and effectively out of the title race in January.
It appears the most ‘Tse Nala’ can hope for now is to finish in the top four which would at least allow them to defend the Independence Top 4 Cup trophy they won in October when next season comes around.
What’s most worrying about Lioli’s current slump is that the side’s key players have simply not come to the party. ‘Tse Nala’ have lost three of their last four games, and five of their last seven.
The defence, which was always one of the team’s mainstays, has become a shambles and Lioli haven’t kept a clean-sheet since November.

Lioli’s recent form:

08/12/18 Lioli 0-1 Likhopo

16/12/18 Swallows 1-0 Lioli

22/12/18 Lioli 2-1 Galaxy

05/01/19 Matlama 3-1 Lioli

Mokhothu said Lioli’s technical team will have to meet with players and map the way forward because it is crucial to start collecting points.
“We will sit down with the players again, we have to get back to winning ways, I think we need to refocus again,” he said.
“I don’t want to put the players under pressure but we have to start winning games. We are not satisfied with our performances, we have to get out of this position we are in.”
Apart from an apparent lack of confidence, Mokhothu said Lioli were further hampered against Matlama by the fact they did not have a full squad because several players only reported for training this week after the festive break.

Mokhothu said the coaching staff had to prepare to face Matlama last Saturday without all their players reporting for duty.
He said Lioli started their preparations last Thursday which was not enough to prepare for such a big game. All of it meant ‘Tse Nala’ fell apart in the second half against Matlama despite a promising start to the game.

“I think we contained (Matlama) well but we let ourselves down, we knew their strengths and weaknesses and we attacked them,” Mokhothu said.
“After that they did not give us a chance to play our game, we lost the game in the second half with the two goals Matlama scored; it took us out of our game-plan and made it hard for us. They attacked us a lot using Bushy Moletsane and I think our performance just deteriorated,” he said.

Mokhothu added: “Matlama came back stronger in the second half and wanted to win the game more (than us). To be honest, we didn’t expect much because of the Christmas break and we started our preparations very late. “We only started training on Thursday and on Friday we did a light training session to avoid injuries. Some of our players were not available; they are only arriving this week.”

Nkheli Liphoto

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