Recently appointed Linare coach, Motlatsi Shale, is hoping for a dream start when the Hlotse-based outfit host LCS in a Vodacom Premier League match at home this afternoon.
Shale, who was sacked by Bantu early this month, told the Sunday Express that the mood in the Tse Tala camp has been very high as he prepares to face a Masheshena side coached by his former assistant, Mpitsa Marai. The two worked together during Shale’s first stint at Bantu, which ended at the start of the current season after the Mafeteng giants had opted not to renew his contract. However, Shale found himself back at Bantu last month but a spate of poor results saw him being shown the door once again.
“He has already won one match against me in the first round of the league campaign, when I was with Bantu so I now have a great chance to get my revenge,” Shale said.
“There many motivating factors for me and my players because it will be my first match in charge of Linare. It has to be a dream start.”
The former national team striker said he hoped to take Linare back to their glory days and is confident his team would be even stronger once he brings in the players he is targeting.
“Things are looking good at the moment and the squad is also not that bad,” said Shale.
“We are looking at bringing in a few more new faces into the squad to strengthen it a bit.
“But so far so good; I can’t complain and hopefully I will get my first win in my first match with the team because like I have mentioned, the plan is to revive Linare as they are one of the big teams in the country.”
Shale also called on Tse Tala supporters to come in numbers today as the team begins a new journey under his watch.
On the other hand, Marai said he expected an exciting clash against a team coached by his former national teammate.
“This is going to be an exciting match more especially because we know each other; we were in the same technical team at Bantu so we know each other well,” Marai said.
“But as much as we know each other’s philosophies, I think he is at an advantage now because he is with a new club. But we have done our job to get ready for the match and I think my troops are ready to fight for the three points against Linare.”
The Masheshena coach said he had only added former Bantu and Likuena playmaker, Mosiuoa Boseka, to his squad while the rest of the team remains the same.
“The advantage about him is that he has been training with us from the first round and does not look like a new player because he has become very familiar with his new surroundings,” said Marai.
“He is well-settled in our squad and raring to go as we seek to improve our position on the log.”
LCS head into the match fifth on the 14-team log from 20 points while Linare are 10th with 14 points. Both sides have played 13 games of the season.
Log-leaders Lioli are also in action today as they entertain LMPS at Setsoto stadium, while Matlama take on Sundawana in Butha-Butha. Bantu, as previously mentioned, are at home to Likila for Bafokeng Mohapi’s first match in charge of the Mafeteng-based side.
Today’s fixtures at a glance
Sundawana v Matlama, Lioli v LMPS, Bantu v Likila United, Linare v LCS