Mpoeleng ‘Stopper’ Mpoeleng has seen it all in local football. During a career that spans 16 years, Stopper has played for several local clubs including Nico United, FC Satmos and Mochudi Centre Chiefs. At the ripe old age of 37 Mpoeleng is not ready to hand his football boots yet. In the twilight of his career, Mpoeleng has come full circle after joining National First Division South outfit Notwane FC in the current season.
The respected defender’s career began with the Gaborone sleeping giants and his mission is clear and simple. Mpoeleng’s new mission is to help the relatively young squad at Toronto to return to the BTC premiership and reclaim the team’s glory day. After mauling rival Letlapeng of Ramotswa 4-0 in Otse Stadium this past weekend, Notwane seem to be in great form with Mpoeleng guiding the young players.
As you can see our squad consists of young players and they have a lot of energy. I am here to guide and help them return to the Premier league. Even the team captain is a youngster so the team requires someone like me so the youngsters listen when I speak. The dreadlocked veteran said Notwane is on course to attain success in the premier league this season.
The arrival of the new team chairman Tebogo Sebego has brought a lot of hope to the team. He is in constant consultation with players,” Mpoeleng said. The former Magosi player said the current Notwane squad is vertically integrated with all departments relying on each other on the pitch. Mpoeleng said the weekend game was an example of sound management with the defense serving, as workers while the midfield did the management part and striker swere directors. According to Mpoeleng, Notwane have a simple plan for this season.
“We are not targeting 11 games. Instead we plan for four games and if we win three, the fourth win will just be a bonus.” Mpoeleng said the fifth game they play would be treated as the first game of the season as the four game cycles is repeated once again. The experienced player said if they win nine out of 11 games their chance of success in the league will be elevated. A natural born leader who speaks well, Mpoeleng started his career as a teenager at Notwane in 1998. After a 10-year spell he left Notwane to try his luck at other local clubs. You will remember that I have been a team captain at all the clubs I have played for. “Meanwhile Mpoeleng said he has no plans to retire from competitive football. I can plan for three more years. I am doing what I love. I do not get any stress when I play.
New GU Stadium Excites Mochudi based soccer rivals
Officials at Mochudi village’s biggest soccer clubs Mochudi Centre Chiefs and Mochudi Rovers are excited at the news that their district will soon have a state of the art football stadium after property and construction magnate Nicholas Zackhem announced the erection of the facility for Gaborone United.
Zackhem, owner and director of Zac Construction, revealed recently to this publication that a football stadium would be built in Bokaa village at a cost of P70 million, with the hope that all phases will be completed by 2025.
Edwin Mothulatshipi, Chairman of Centre Chiefs, as well as Mochudi Rovers’ Chairman Sugar Molefhe both spoke to The Midweek Sun on what the construction of the stadium means for their respective clubs. Both admit they would jump at the opportunity to use the facility for their official matches, and based on what Gaborone United financier Zackhem has shared with The Midweek Sun, it will not be difficult for all the other clubs based around the area to use the facility. TO READ THE COMPLETE STORY, BUY THIS WEEK’S EDITION (11 August 2021) OF THE MIDWEEK SUN AT A STORE NEAR YOU.
Local hockey body to incur massive financial loss post Covid-19
Botswana Hockey Association (BHA) President Unaswi Matebu has confessed that her Association will suffer major financial losses post the Covid 19 pandemic that has left the sport fraternity at a standstill.
Matebu recently told this publication that the current situation does not only have tremendous effects on their schedule, but also there will be financial implications more especially that the association does not have full time sponsors.
“We had to cancel most of our calendar activities such as tournaments, national team trainings, Board meetings, and club activities since mid-March this year, all of which have cost us money to prepare for,” Matebu remarked in an interview.
Additionally she said the planning phase for their 5-year Development Plan which was supposed to be launched in June will have to be postponed. Also there are national competitions that were postponed till further notice despite them having already set up teams and having already started preparing.
“Our Indoor Hockey Senior National teams had already started preparations for the Africa Cup of Nations – a World Cup qualifier – that was supposed to be held in June, 2020, in South Africa. Our Field Hockey Senior National teams had already begun preparations for the Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers that were supposed to be held in August, 2020 in Zimbabwe,” she added.
Moreover, it was going to be an excessively detailed and decorated year for local hockey governing body, with the Youth National teams having already began preparations for the Africa Youth Championships that were billed for September, 2020, in Ghana.
“Player conditioning has obviously been affected because athletes are currently not training as planned and what we had achieved so far might go to waste. We are only hoping that the Continental and World Hockey governing bodies will give us enough time to prepare for these competitions post the pandemic.”