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Mothoana in top form in Tunisia

Teboho Molapo

MASERU — Likuena international Bokang ‘Lefty’ Mothoana is in top form in Tunisia where his team Union Sportive Monastir are fighting to bounce back to the country’s premier league.

US Monastir who were relegated from Tunisia’s premier league last May are top of the first division two points ahead of second-placed ES Beni Khalled and with six games to play.

Mothoana told the Sunday Express on Tuesday that the team’s good performance did not come easy.

Tunisian football leagues only resumed in April after being disrupted for nearly two months by violent anti-government protests at the beginning of the year.

“It was tough to re-adjust to playing at first due to security problems especially when we had to go and play away games,” Mothoana said.

“There was a time when we didn’t even know when we were going to play our games because the league kept postponing them.

“We were also forced to play behind closed doors because of the political unrest. The situation wasn’t good at all but now it’s much better,” he said.

The skilful midfielder and his teammates have now picked up from where they left off.

Mothoana, capped 29 times for Likuena, has been a constant feature in the Monastir line-up.

This season the left-footed dead-ball specialist has played 22 of their 23 games in all competitions, missing just one through suspension after collecting three yellow cards.

Monastir have won 11 league games and lost just once all season.

They are also still in the running for the prestigious Tunisia Cup and host premier league giants Esperance Tunis on Wednesday in the quarterfinal.

Mothoana who helped Monastir reach its first ever Tunisian cup final back in 2009 has scored in the team’s last two games, including a crucial two-all draw with CO Transports last Sunday.

“That has to be the toughest we have played this season. We scored first and went to the interval leading. They then came back and scored two goals and we had to chase the game until we equalised.

“My target is to win the promotion with US Monastir and play the Tunisian final cup again, this time win it,” the Likhopo product added.

Mothoana’s impressive form is surely likely to attract interest from possible suitors. However for now he is happy to stay at Monastir and work on improving his game.

He told the Sunday Express that his contact at the Tunisian club expires at the end of the season.

“I really don’t know what next season has in store for me because my contract finishes this season. I’m really happy here at Monastir and the team is also happy with my performance. There are no other offers that I have knowledge about so far,” he said.

One topic on everyone’s mind is the return of the national team Likuena for the 2014 World Cup qualifiers next year. Mothoana is one of the players who will be vying for a spot.

“I’m very happy that the national team is going to return next year. It is the window where most of our local players are seen.

“It also improves our standard of football because every player is working hard and playing well in order to represent our country,” Mothoana said.

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