League starts with a bang (Sports opinion)

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By Mikia Kalati

Fourteen goals were recorded in the opening matches of the new season with the 6-0 win by Lioli over Mpharane Celtic the biggest score-line as the league champions made clear their intention of defending their title.

We have always been complaining about the lack of goals in our league but I feel that Lioli and Linare deserve to be congratulated for their great start to the new campaign.

The Hlotse-based giants, who are without a major trophy in over three decades, registered a convincing 3-0 win over LMPS to start the season on a high note.

Other big guns Matlama, LCS and LDF also won their matches to make it an interesting start to the new campaign.

Lioli did not rest on their laurels during the off-season and have reinforced their team with a lot of quality players and they will be the team to beat in the new season.

Three of Tse Nala’s new signings were among the goal scorers last weekend as Mosholu “Shoes” Mokhothu’s side recorded their biggest win in the past three seasons.

Linare also lived-up to the potential that we saw during the preseason King’s Soccer Spectacular Challenge and we hope their coach Thulo Leboela and his squad will finally bring a smile on their long-suffering fans’ faces.

The club have not won the league title since 1980.

The only match that failed to produce goals at the weekend was the encounter between Bantu and Qoaling Highlanders.

I feel that the improvement in goal scoring ability by our strikers is music to the ears of the Likuena coach Leslie Notši.

The national team has over the last few years faced a serious problem converting goal scoring chances but the emergence of Lioli top marksman Tšepo Seturumane has brought fresh hope that this will be corrected.

The talented, left footed player scored 16 goals in his second campaign last season to win the Golden Boot award.

This season a player like Nkoto Masoabi has already raised his hand when he scored a brace in his first match in the top-flight league.

This can only mean that the Likuena coach will be spoilt for choice as far as selection of quality players is concerned.

The dreadlocked striker raised eyebrows during the pre-season match in the colours of Matlama before he signed for Lioli and will no doubt be among the players to watch as the season progresses.

It is not in the striking department that Notši will have a headache when it comes to selection of players.

The likes of defender Basia Makepe and Matlama playmaker, Phafa Tšosane, continue to shine at club level and will surely be challenging for a starting place in the Likuena team as they are already in the team’s set up.

One can only wish that more goals will come in the upcoming league matches.

I’m hoping for an improved and competitive league.

Teams like Mpharane Celtic will have to go back to the drawing board so as to compete with the premier league’s big guns.

I was also impressed by what I saw in match officiating at the weekend. I hope our referees will maintain those standards throughout the season.

 

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