Matlama out to conquer
ECONET Premier League pacesetters, Matlama, will be hoping to continue with their fine run when they return to league action this afternoon against relegation threatened Swallows at Setsoto Stadium.
The Thabile Secker coached side has been enjoying a great run this year and comes into this weekend’s matches seating at the top of the 14-team league table with 44 points after 19 matches.
Swallows on the other hand are fighting to wiggle out of the relegation dog fight as they are currently anchoring the log table with 12 points from 20 matches.
To make matters worse, the Mazenod based outfit parted ways with their coach Nthako Nalana who left them last Monday.
Matlama, on the other hand, are motivated following their triumph in last weekend’s MGC Soccer Spectacular in Mantšonyane.
Secker told this publication recently that they have been working hard and can’t afford to take their eyes off the ball now.
“We have been hard at work,” Secker said adding: “it has been a long break for other teams but it was business as usual for us because we were involved in the Top8 quarterfinals and we also played in MGC Spectacular and some of our players were away with the national team”.
“We gave the rest of the team sometime off on Wednesday as there were some signs of fatigue and we are now ready for the Swallows match.
“They (Swallows) are not a small team like people want to assume. This is going to be a tough match because Swallows are fighting for survival so, we have to be very cautious and also ensure that we don’t lose focus. They are going to get all the respect they deserve,” Secker said.
Secker admitted that winning MGC spectacular might work in his side’s favor as a motivating factor.
“It is always important to keep the winning momentum and I am happy with the commitment that my players have shown so far in all competitions. It is important that we won the MGC tournament to keep the momentum and hopefully we will take that motivation into our league matches.
“In the MGC tournament, we also gave some of our fringe players exposure and I must admit that I was impressed with their performance. It is proof that we have a big pool of players and they will keep pushing each other to work hard which is good for competition,” Secker said.
Swallows captain Esaih Mosala said his side will fight for positive results against Matlama.
“Football can be complicated sometimes and it needs people with big hearts. I have been with the rest of the team this (last) week as we were preparing for this match and just like any match, our intention is to win.
“The morale has been high in the team and Matlama will have to sweat for victory,” Mosala said.
Mosala, who used to play for Matlama, said there is still a lot to fight for at the moment and they are not prepared to throw in the towel yet.
“It is not about this Matlama match only. There are still other matches to follow so we have to remain focused and I am hopeful that we will still survive. The fact that Matlama didn’t get to rest for the whole month might work in their favor because they have been playing competitively but we will fight and see where it gets us,” Mosala said.
In the first match at the same venue this afternoon, Likhopo host Sefotha-fotha while Linare will play Galaxy at Maputsoe DIFA Ground.