MASERU — Insurance giants Metropolitan Lesotho will sponsor the Under-20 national soccer team to the tune of M150 000 over the next three years.
Metropolitan Lesotho managing director Nkau Matete said this during the signing of the deal with Lefa on Wednesday in Maseru.
He said they had decided to end a “gentleman’s agreement” they had with the Lesotho Football Association (Lefa) by signing the three-year contract.
“You should understand that this is a technical sponsorship where we buy soccer boots, training shoes, attire and balls for the team,” Matete said.
“This however does not mean that Lefa is not allowed to come and ask for more assistance for the Under-20 team whenever needed because this is just a minimum.”
Matete added: “Metropolitan and Lefa have a long relationship which dates as far back as 2004 but all this time it has been a gentleman’s agreement.
“We’ve been doing this because it is our culture as Basotho to trust each other’s words but now we want to professionalise things between us.”
Putting pen to paper is going to help both parties to fully understand the terms of the agreement, he said.
“The purpose of this meeting today is to formalise things because professionalism in business is very important,” Matete said.
“This will serve as a guideline for our agreement as we continue to sponsor the Under-20 national team,” he said.
He said they will continue to sponsor the team even after the three-year contract has ended.
“We believe that we are more effective when starting at the junior level because that is where we build a senior national team that the nation can be proud of.”
Lefa public relations officer, Baba Malephane, said the sponsorship deal was a result of the relationship they had built up over the past eight years.
“Metropolitan has been helping our team in a great way and through its assistance, the team has managed to qualify for the African Championship games in Benin in 2005 as well the just-ended Caf Under-20 games,” Malephane said.
He said his association was happy that Metropolitan Lesotho is not only focusing on football.
“I am happy that you are not only interested in sponsoring football but you are also involved in other sporting codes.”