We lost a battle not the war, says Matlama

We lost a battle not the war, says Matlama

MASERU – Matlama coach Thabile Secker believes Sunday’s shock defeat to Kick4Life was just a setback in his side’s quest for Econet Premier League glory this season.
Previously flying high and the talk of the town, ‘Tse Putsoa’ were stunned 2-0 by Kick4Life at the Lesotho Correctional Service Grounds to lose their unbeaten run to the 2018/19 league campaign.
Kick4Life hadn’t won or even scored a goal since the opening day of the season in September, but it was difficult to tell which team was higher on the log standings as the visitors harassed Secker’s side all afternoon and forced ‘Tse Putsoa’ into basic schoolboy errors.

Not only were Matlama second best on the day, they dropped to second in the Econet Premier League behind LCS on goals scored.
Both ‘Tse Putsoa’ and ‘Masheshena’ have 17 points and the gap to LDF and Bantu – who are third and fourth respectively – is now only two points.
It wasn’t the best way to head into the international break; however, Secker preached calm and insisted Matlama’s unbeaten run had to come to an end at some stage.

“The league is a long journey and we are still in it, we have the second round coming and we want to finish first (at the end of the first round),” Secker said.
“There is always pressure in football, even if you win, because you have to maintain the wins and momentum.

“When you lose you also have to look for areas for improvement so that you can get back to winning ways,” he added.
Secker said Matlama will use the two-week break from league action to refresh and come back stronger.

When ‘Tse Putsoa’ return to Econet Premier League duty they face a pivotal stretch of games starting with a clash against champions Bantu on November 23.
After that test, Bantu face rivals Lioli, Lesotho Defence Force and current leaders LCS in successive weeks.

It is a run of games that will test the championship credentials of the Pitso Ground side as they seek to make a run at a first league title since 2010.
Secker said it is vital for Matlama to use the league recess to fix errors from the Kick4Life defeat.
“We are going to use the international break to play friendly games with competitive teams to keep our fitness,” he said.

“Kick4Life were more determined than us (on Sunday). Maybe it is because our players were (too) sure of themselves because of the countless previous wins.
“We also lost concentration in the match,” Secker added.

“When senior players show (a poor) attitude it becomes a problem because we talked to them about concentration at the half-time break but still they couldn’t keep (their concentration) and we conceded the second goal.”

Nkheli Liphoto

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