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Thotanyana spells new coach’s targets

Leemisa Thuseho

THE newly appointed Lioli coach Thomas Tshabalala’s mandate is to restore the side’s glory days and keep the team in the top four throughout the season, club president Lebohang Thotanyana has said.

Tshabalala is also expected to win two major cups in the 2020/21 season.

Thotanyana said this during a press conference at Alliance Insurance Company’s Maseru offices. The event was meant to unveil Tshabalala as the new coach.

Tshabalala was appointed to the Lioli job after he dumped Butha-Buthe side Lifofane FC last month. Tshabalala signed a one-year contract with Lioli. He is succeeding Morena Ramorebodi whom Thotanyana said turned down an offer. Ironically, a faction rival to Thotanyana’s at Lioli has appointed Ramorebodi as its coach (see story on page 22).

“Our mandate is to restore victorious days at Lioli; therefore, the coach’s mandate is to keep the team in the top four all through the season and win two major cups,” Thotanyana said.

“This is how we are going to measure his performance and we are saying this so that the football fraternity will have chance at the end of the season to judge whether the coach has fulfilled his mandate or not.”

He said signing Tshabalala was not motivated by his mere availability but because he met all their requirements and scored the highest points in their interviews.

For the past two seasons, Lioli missed out on a top-four finish. The side has been enduring a poor run of results.

Thotanyana said his committee would provide timely updates to the supporters regarding the signing and releasing of players while also giving the new coach ample time to access all the players before deciding who to sign or release.

“The coach is yet to assess all the players that and decide who will make his squad. However, he will be working with the team’s management in doing so,” said Thotanyana.

Tshabalala said he knows what kind of football Lioli must play to shine and I know where to reinforce it… this is a team I have been following for a long time.

Tshabalala also warned the team’s players to expect changes.

“No player is safe until I say so,” Tshabalala said.

Thatanyana said the new committee has already started developing the team’s four-year strategic plan.

The press conference also saw Lioli unveiling its 2020/21 season Umbro kit concept which is expected to arrive before the end of November.

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