Good news for local football
Last Monday Independence Top 4 cup sponsors Metropolitan Lesotho and Standard Lesotho Bank came together with the Premier League Management Committee (PLMC) to announce an improved package for the annual tournament which will see the winners getting M200 000 while the runners-up will get M100 000.
The third and fourth-placed teams will receive M70 000 and M50 000 respectively.
The individual prizes were also increased for the top scorer, best player, best goalkeeper, top referees and assistant referees.
As if that was not enough good news, the premier league received a shot in the arm from Econet Lesotho who injected M2million sponsorship for three years.
As a result, the league champions will walk away with M500 000 and the runners-up will pocket M200 000.
Reigning champions Bantu pocketed M200 000 last season and therefore the new packages are certainly sweet music for the football fraternity.
For a long time the sporting community having been asking companies to come on board and it appears the message has sunk in.
Government must also do more to help in professionalising sport so that athletes can earn a decent living out of their talents.
I thank the three companies (Econet, Metropolitan and Standard Bank) for heeding the pleas for sponsorship and hopefully this will help our teams to be better run.
Running clubs is expensive and most clubs do not have individual sponsors and are heavily dependent on the prize monies.
For their part, the clubs must repay the sponsors through maintaining high standards of administration, professionalism and competitiveness because it has to be a reciprocal and symbiotic relationship with the sponsors.
The PLMC and its teams must behave in way that will not tarnish the image of football and scare off sponsors.
The ball is now in the court of the teams and their players. This is the time for clubs to make a huge statement and become the inaugural winners of the improved competitions.