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Matlama vs Linare Alliance Winter Challenge


Chris Theko

Linare FC will be looking to reign supreme over Matlama FC when the two premier league giants meet tomorrow during the Alliance Winter Challenge tournament.

The mini tournament will be on its 6th edition when it returns this weekend in Maputsoe DiFA Stadium, Leribe.

The tournament is played by Alliance Insurance-sponsored Premier League teams.

During the draw, Lioli FC was scheduled to face LCS FC in the first match of the four-team tournament tomorrow while Matlama will lock horns with Linare in the second match.

The semi-final winners will face off in the finals the following day to battle for the M25 000 prize.

That match will be preceded by the losers’ final.

In an interview with this publication, Linare assistant coach Motlatsi Thibinyane, said they will not take anything for granted as they have a mandate to win every competition this year.

“The entire team has been given the mandate to win all the competitions. We will not take Alliance Winter Challenge as just a preseason,” Thibinyane said.

“So our approach for this tournament because of our mandate, is to win the first game no matter who it is and Matlama has to be our first culprit,” he added.

Thibinyane stated that the team has been reinforced with the new technical team which will be looking to test the new players.

Linare recently revealed a new technical team that will be working with head coach Tebogo Moloi. The team is made up of Leleka Faldez as the technical director, Teisi Moholisi as the general manager and Tente Molapo as the physical trainer.

They have also made additions to their playing roster with Rethabile Senkoto and Realeboha Rankhotha both from Lifofane.

Rorisang Lekhula was promoted from development and Teboho Masuoane.

During the 2020/21 Vodacom Premier League season, Linare were the only team that defeated Matlama twice at home and away.

Matlama is set to feature in the Confederation of African Football (CAF) Champions League in September for the preliminary rounds.

For his part, Matlama coach Molebatsi Mothobi said he is going to utilize the tournament as a scale to measure his team’s readiness for the upcoming season and the CAF Champions league.

“We have not changed our team much from the players we had last season so we will be approaching the tournament with a mentality to gauge our readiness for the upcoming season,” Mothobi said.

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