Matsoso relishes Likuena challenge
UNITED States-based forward Napo Matsoso says he is ready for his Likuena debut after being called up by coach, Moses Maliehe ahead of next week’s 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier against Tanzania.
The 23 year-old University of Kentucky Wildcats attacker who left the country at the age of 15 in 2009 to study in the United States of America was recently named in the 24 man squad along with other new faces, Tsietsi Motšeare of Sky Battalion and Bantu’s Itumeleng Falene.
Likuena have an away tie against Tanzania on 10 June before travelling to the Comoros for an African Nations Championship (CHAN) encounter four days later. The return CHAN fixture will be played at Setsoto Stadium on 18 June.
Likuena are in Group L of AFCON qualifiers along with Cape Verde, Uganda and Tanzania.
Matsoso told the Sunday Express that he was looking forward to his debut for Likuena.
“I am very grateful to get a call up to the senior national team,” Matsoso said ahead of his arrival, adding, “I am ready to play for Likuena and I’ve been ready for quite some time”.
Matsoso ended his four season stint with the university side on 19 goals and 20 assists, making him one of the hottest prospects in Conference USA play.
That resume caught the eye of head coach Jay Heaps who called him to his roster at Major Soccer League side New England Revolution for the second round in January this year but he was unfortunate not to make it.
Matsoso said playing for Likuena meant everything to him and he would give everything to the cause.
“It means everything to be able to represent my country and that is every player’s dream.
“I know it is not going to be easy to just to break into the team but I am determined to work hard to get the nod,” he said.
Likuena squad to face Tanzania:
Goalkeepers: Daniel Jousse, Sam Ketsekile (LCS) and Likano Mphuthi (LDF)
Defenders: Mkwanazi Motlomelo (Sandawana), Mafa Moremoholo, Bokang Sello, Kopano Tseka (Lioli), Thapelo Mokhehle and Itumeleng Faleni (Bantu).
Midfielders: Bokang Mothoana (Kick4Life), Tšoanelo Koetle (Lioli), Kefuoe Mahula, Jane Thabantšo (Both Matlama), Hlompho Kalake, Thabiso Mohapi, Litšepe Marabe, (All Bantu), Lehlohonolo Fothoane, (Swallows), Tsietsi Motšeare (Sky Battalion) Napo Matsoso (USA).
Strikers: Thapelo Tale, Thabiso Brown (Kick4Life), Tumelo Khutlang (Lioli), Sera Motebang (Matlama).