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LDF’s Katleho Makateng shines



MASERU – Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) striker Katleho Makateng ran the show yesterday against Swallows at Ha Ratjomose as he bagged a hat-trick in a 3-1 victory.

The win is LDF’s sixth is a row and their stunning run of form has them poised to finish second in the Vodacom Premier League which would be their highest finish since ‘Sohle-Sohle’ were runners-up in 2012.

Makateng was subbed off in the second half with an apparent injury but it is believed he will be available for LDF’s season finale against Liphakoe on Sunday. Makateng, who has now scored 18 league goals, is locked in a fight for the golden boot award with Lesotho Correctional Service (LCS) striker Makara Ntaitsane who has 16 goals.

LDF did not make the best of starts and Swallows drew first blood in the first half through veteran striker Mohau Khali but it did not take long before Makateng levelled matters.
The game was being played at the same time as Likhopo’s match against Lijabatho in Morija.

Swallows went into the game knowing that anything less than a win for Likhopo would ensure their safety.
At the halftime break, the Swallows players would no doubt have been aware that Likhopo were trailing, and as long as Likhopo were losing, Swallows had nothing to worry about.

Swallows enthusiastically returned to the second half trying to score but Makateng proved to be too hot to handle as he found the back of the net twice to hand LDF the victory.
Nonetheless, Swallows will stay up thanks to Teele Ntšonyana who took over his boyhood club on a voluntary basis three months ago and has brilliantly kept them up.

When Ntšonyana took over in February, Swallows were second from bottom and were firm favourites for relegation.
Speaking in his post-match interview, Ntšonyana did not say if he would continue coaching Swallows.

He said he has done what he needed to do and it is now up to those who are left to rebuild the team and make it ready for the new season.

“I have achieved what I came here to do because the big thing was to make sure they avoid relegation, and I am happy this happened,” Ntšonyana said.

“It gives us a chance to build the team for the coming season. If I am here, I would be happy with that opportunity, it just depends on whether it will meet all the needs because I am a professional coach. I am only doing voluntary work right now because it’s my (hometown) team,” he said.

Ntšonyana said he did not change a lot when he arrived. Nevertheless, Swallows have won three of their last five matches to soar out of the relegation zone.

“I did not change much because I inherited the same team, I did not change players. The only thing I told the players is that to lose games is up to them and to win games is also up to them,” Ntšonyana said.

“I am still struggling even now, if you see me shouting at them it’s because there are things that I taught them but they are not doing them on the pitch,” he added.

With relegation now no longer an issue, Swallows will take on Lifofane on Sunday in Butha-Buthe free in the knowledge they have miraculously survived another Premiership season.

Final round of fixtures:
Saturday (14:00)
Lijabatho vs. Sefotha-fotha (Morija)
Linare vs. CCX (Maputsoe)
LCS vs. Kick4Life (LCS)
Sunday (14:00)
Lioli vs. Likhopo (TY)
Lifofane vs. Swallows (Butha-Buthe)
Liphakoe vs. LDF (LCS)
LMPS vs. Manonyane (LDF)
Matlama vs. Bantu (Maputsoe 13:00)

Tlalane Phahla

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