Ex-SA coach Senong turns to Pirates, Free State Stars to sharpen Lesotho ahead of crucial Afcon qualifiers

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However, the former Bafana Bafana assistant coach said there were still positives in the team’s build-up to the Total Afcon Group L matches against Sierra Leone and Nigeria in the coming days.

Likuena, as the Lesotho side is affectionately known, host the Leone Stars in Maseru on Saturday, followed by a long trip to West Africa to take on the Super Eagles of Nigeria in Lagos on Tuesday.

Senong heads into the matches with a depleted squad after key players, including Jane Thabantso and Lisema Lebokolloane were withdrawn from the squad due to injuries. US-based Lesia Thetsane as well as Thabiso Brown who plays in Bolivia, will also not be part of the squad for the two matches.

former Bafana Bafana assistant coach said there were still positives in the team’s build-up to the Total Afcon Group L matches against Sierra Leone and Nigeria in the coming days
“I must say, we were very fortunate to start early with the local-based players because they had a long layoff after football activities were suspended in the country due to Covid-19,” said Senong, shortly after he named his squad this week.

“Starting early helped us a lot because we needed to bring the fitness levels of our players back, which we really did. The players are looking fit now, but of course playing and training are two different things,” added the former South African national team youth coach.

“We managed to play two practice matches against South African clubs and we tried because the players didn’t really battle in terms of fitness. I must say, the long camp has also helped to improve the relationship and understanding a lot between the players,” he said, referring to warn-up games against Orlando Pirates and Free State Stars.

Senong has called up striker Motebang Sera of Bloemfontein Celtic.

Lesotho are at the bottom of Group L with two points from four games played so far. –

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