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Mafoso set for dramatic return to Sundawana



Luciah Phahla

Maseru – Bantu assistant coach Bob Mafoso could be set to make a dramatic return to Sundawana. Mafoso guided the unheralded Butha-Buthe club to their first-ever top four league finish last season.

After his miraculous feat, he was head-hunted by Bantu to form part of their revolution as assistant to new coach James Madidilane.

However, sources say Mafoso is facing an uncertain future in Mafeteng because of work commitments.

The sources say Mafoso, who works for the Ministry of Local Government in Butha-Buthe, has failed in a bid to get a transfer to Mafeteng. This makes his arrangement problematic given the nearly three hours and 197 kilometres distance between Mafeteng and Butha-Buthe.

The situation has caught Sundawana’s attention and the club this week confirmed it is open to the possible return of its former coach.

Speaking to thepost on Tuesday, Sundawana general manager Mapena Tloaelo said Mafoso is always welcome back and seemed to play up the possibility of the beloved coach making a dramatic return to ‘Tse Bo Yellow’.

“We have not heard anything but I have been communicating with (Mafoso) personally and he told me that he is still fixing some things with his club and if he does not succeed he will be glad to come back. He did not disclose what it is (he is fixing), and we have no problem with him coming back,” Mafoso said.

He added: “(Mafoso) did not leave the club on bad terms. We have a good relationship with him and, of course, we still want him and we will welcome him back if things don’t work out for him with his club.”

Bantu started their 2016/17 Vodacom Premier League campaign with an impressive 3-1 win over Rovers two weeks ago and will be looking to build on that performance when they face Likhopo on Saturday.

Nonetheless, Tloaelo claimed Mafoso is open to the idea of re-joining Sundawana.

“He loves the club as much as we still love him, he still wants to coach,” Tloaelo said.

“Mafoso is not the type of person you can just forget. Remember he put the club in the top four and we were looking forward to him playing in the Independence Top 4 Cup (in October), and I am sure he also has the desire to see the team do well in the top four,” he said.

However, despite Sundawana’s increasing hopes, Bantu communications and marketing manager Motlatsi Mofokeng insisted Mafoso will remain in the ‘Matšo Matebele’ camp and rubbished talk of the trainer leaving Mafeteng.

“That is not true at all, he is still part of the team,” he said. “After the rumours came out I talked to him and he told me that he was surprised as well as he got calls from the fans asking him about the reports.”

Nevertheless, sources close to the situation say Mafoso still does not have a contract with Bantu which would simplify any return to Sundawana.

Mofokeng attempted to clear the air on Mafoso’s contract situation.

“He does have a contract with the club although it has not yet arrived to us,” he said. “It’s still with him because he was still solving issues around him. But he said it’s ready and we will have it in no time.”

Commenting on reports Mafoso failed to secure a work transfer from Butha-Buthe to Mafeteng, Mofokeng said it had nothing to do with Bantu. He said Mafoso being based in Butha-Buthe is not an issue for the Mafeteng giants.

“We don’t have a problem with him working from Butha-Buthe and we have never tried to get him transferred. So, I don’t know about that if he personally has been trying to get a transfer,” Mofokeng said.

“I mean, we had a player who was living in Qacha’s Nek, so (Mafoso) being in Butha-Buthe is not a problem.”

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