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Notši rallies his troops



Luciah Phahla



Kick4Life coach Leslie Notši has played down the club’s expectations ahead of the 2016/17 Vodacom Premier League season.

Kick4Life gate-crashed the league’s top eight last season by finishing sixth and have been touted as possible top four contenders this term.

However, speaking on Tuesday, Notši said the Old Europa side didn’t want to burden themselves with huge expectations. He insisted the main objective is to maintain their place amongst the league’s top eight.

Kick4Life were promoted to the 14-team premiership in 2013.

They finished 11th in their debut top-flight campaign before their impressive sixth place last season.

“This is a new club. Remember this will be our third year in the premier league, we don’t want to put ourselves under pressure,” Notši said. “We want to maintain our position in the top eight. We finished in sixth position last season and, if we can keep that, I will be happy.”

The former Likuena mentor said he is bracing himself for a tough season hence Kick4Life’s activity in the transfer market.

The Old Europa club has already secured the services of former Likhopo kingpin Bokang Mothoana as well as prospects Monaheng Mokitimi and Mokoteli Mohapi from second division outfit Tšenola United.

“It is going to be a very tough season, not only for us but for every other team in the league,” Notši said. “Teams are signing players (and) improving their squads and so are we. We are just getting ourselves ready.”

He continued: “We have Lefty here and two other guys from Tšenola United as well some players from our development (team). They are settling in well with the rest of the team.”

Notši singled out Mothoana for praise saying the Lesotho international’s experience will be key to Kick4Life’s prospects this season.

Mothoana, who is affectionately known as Lefty, spent six years with Union Sportive Monastirienne in Tunisia before returning home in 2013. He is a two-time league winner with Likhopo and has been a Likuena international since 2005.

“He is bringing a wealth of experience to the team and we are very happy to have him here,” Notši said. “We will need his experience next season and a player like Lefty will be very important to us. We will benefit a lot from his experience. He will help us a lot when we attack. Even defensively he will add value.”

“We have quite experienced players here. We have the likes of (Thabo) Masualle, Moruti (Thamahane) and then Lefty. Lefty is a leader,” he added.

Notši pin-pointed goal-scoring as an area his side needs to improve. Kick4Life only scored 24 goals in their 26 games last season, only Liphakoe, Rovers and the relegated duo of Likila United and Mphatlalatsane registered less.

Notši said he may dip into the transfer market to remedy the problem.

“We have been working on a number of things (especially) our striking force. There are players that we are looking at and the club is still working on (signing them),” he said. “We want to improve our finishing (and) be clinical in front of goals. Goal-scoring is still a problem here in Lesotho, you can see even during cup games where matches are decided through penalties.”

Kick4Life begin their 2016/17 season when they host Likhopo on August 27.

Notši said his team’s preparations are on track.

He said his charges have been in intensive training sessions themselves physically and mentally for what promises to be an interesting season.

“So far, so good for us. The preparations are going quite smoothly. We are building something here,” Notši said.


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