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Marai pleads for calm


Moorosi Tsiane

AFTER his side’s performance slumped, dropped points in two consecutive matches and lost its top spot on the Econet Premier League table, LCS coach Mpitsa Marai says it’s too early to start panicking.

The correctional service side started the 2018/19 premier league season like a house on fire and has been at the summit of the log for about two months until they were dethroned by Matlama last Sunday.

LCS went into their yesterday’s match against Liphakoe seating second on the standings with 34 points trailing Matlama by a point. Matlama however, still have a game in hand against reigning champions Bantu.

Matlama were also in action yesterday, playing LDF at Setsoto Stadium while LCS travelled to Quthing Pitso Ground to play Liphakoe.

LCS, with six league trophies, started dropping points when they lost 2-1 to Matlama a fortnight ago before they were held to a goalless draw by Linare last weekend while Matlama beat LMPS 1-0 to jump to the top.

However, Marai said there is still a long way to go and his side can still regain its spot at the top of the table.

“There is still a long way to go because we have 10 matches to play and there is only one-point difference between us and Matlama so we can’t start to panic now,” Marai said.

“Actually, this League is still open for at least the five top teams.”

Third in the league before yesterday matches was Kick4Life with 28 points, LDF were fourth with 26 points while Lioli sat on fifth with 25 points.

All the top five teams have played 16 games except Kick4Life and Matlama have both played 15.

Fish, as the former Likuena defender is popularly known in football circles, admitted that the absence of some of his key players like Sepriti Malefane, Leboneng Moqecho and Refiloe Mothae in the last two matches was a blow for his side.

“Injuries negatively affected us because we didn’t have Sepiriti and Mothae who were nursing injuries. Attacking midfielder Setho Moshoeshoe, who has been crucial at creating and scoring goals this season had just returned from an injury and in the last two matches he was not 100 percent fit.

“Leboneng, who was our top scorer last season is available intermittently due to work commitments,” Marai said.

However, on a positive note, Marai said his charges still managed to play according to his directions although they were still a bit shot of luck.

“Sometimes one just needs a bit of luck to win matches. Even though we have dropped points in last two matches, I am impressed because we managed to play well, create goal scoring chances but failed to convert. That is one area that we also have to improve,” Marai said.

LCS last won a major trophy when they won back-to-back titles in the 2010/11 and the 2011/12 seasons.

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