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LIGHTS FADE AT MOTLAKASE

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beMOBILE Premiership strugglers Motlakase Power Dynamos are a team that is going down this season.

Surprisingly, the team’s coach Agang Mogotsi believes that come next season, they will still be playing premiership football.Motlakase squandered an opportunity to move closer to safety when they lost 2-1 to Police XI at home on Saturday night but Mogotsi reckons the fight for survival is far from over and that his side will shock many by retaining top flight football status.

Languishing second from bottom on the log with two victories from 18 outings, the Palapye side seems set for doom alongside FC Satmos unless they miraculously conjure up some escape strategy.

Mogotsi said that the team’s stakeholders met and mapped a survival strategy which is informed by an analysis they made during the Christmas break. “We realized that we need to bolster our frontline. We lost Lapologang Motlogi to Sua Flamengos at the beginning of the season but we have brought him back. He was our top goal scorer for the past two seasons and losing him had an impact as we couldn’t score enough goals,” he told Sun Sport.

Mogotsi added that they have identified lack of experience as a major problem in their squad, hence a decision to bring back Otsile Osenna and Gabatlhomphe Tsheko, both of whom had joined Jwaneng Galaxy FC in the recent off-season. Dynamos relied on at least 7 school going children in the first round and that cost the team dearly when the boys had to be granted leave to seat for their examinations.

The coach however confirmed that the technical team now wants to use the tried and tested. He is convinced the team will sign more players to strengthen their squad before the end of January.

Mogotsi’s dream of seeing his side compete in the premiership next season could be dealt a blow if the star players rumoured to be on their way out eventually leave his club. He has already lost captain Lerato Botshelo to Gaborone United and left-back Joseph Nkgoeng is said to be on his way to Miscellaneous.

Miscellaneous coach Russia Chaba has confirmed that they have held talks with the player and his arrival in Serowe is imminent. However, Mogotsi dismissed Nkgoeng’s proposed move to Miscellaneous as a social media hoax and added that the player will be appointed as the team’s new captain.

Another player on the verge of leaving Dynamos is industrious midfielder Gape Pogba Mohutsiwa. Sun Sport has been reliably informed that Mochudi Centre Chiefs have approached Palapye All Stars, the parent club that has loaned Mohutsiwa to Motlakase, about the availability of the player this transfer window.
Mohutsiwa confirmed Chiefs’ inquiry to Sun Sport and he is very keen on a move to the big boys.

According to Mogotsi, survival will depend on two things – the commitment of the players and the support of the fans. He said that there are still many points to play for and they will treat each game as if it is their last. However, he must very worried man given his side’s next five fixtures: Green Lovers away; Township Rollers at home; BDF XI away; Nico United at home and Jwaneng Galaxy FC away.

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Zapata takes charge

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TAKING CHARGE: Zapata assumes his position

Township Rollers Head Coach Rodolfo Zapata was this past Tuesday in charge of the team’s training session, a first since he was appointed Rollers coach in November 2018.

Sun Sports has been reliably informed by sources that were present at the morning session that the Argentine coach was at the grounds and it was all clear that he is now the man in control of the team.

Zapata was made to jump through hoops before he could finally take over the reins at Rollers. First he had to battle with his former club, Gaborone United to cancel his active working permit with the team. The matter dragged for more than a month.

When GU finally gave in, Zapata’s qualifications as a coach were questioned. This came as shocking given that Zapata is GU’s former coach. Nevertheless, a source within Botswana Football Association (BFA) circles has told this paper that Zapata was cleared by CAF last week. As things stand Zapata will be expected on the bench this coming Friday when they play Notwane. If not, then his first job will be the Mascom Top 8 Semi-final against GU next week.

The Rollers management could not be reached yesterday as their phones rang unanswered and repeated efforts revealed that the team spokesperson, Bafana Pheto is currently across borders.
Meanwhile, Zapata’s arrival comes at a crucial time following Rollers ‘s embarrassing defeat to the hands of rivals Jwaneng Galaxy this past weekend. Galaxy cut short the endless winning streak of the defending championships to serve them their second loss since the beginning of the league with a score line of 3-1.

Of late , unconfirmed reports suggest that players had grown impatient with the caretaker coach, Thabo Motang. They differed and questioned his decisions on the pitch. Motang is now reported to have gone back to the department he knows best, goalkeeper coach.

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Moluba wants a replica of previous success

Tshepo Kehemile

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PLAY MAKER: Moalosi is a prolific goal scorer

Township Rollers influential midfielder, Edwin Moalosi confirmed his ambitions to help his team to repeat their run in the previous season to win both Botswana Telecommunication (BTC) Premiership league and the Mascom Top 8. Moluba as he is affectionately known said this after their 3-1 loss to Jwaneng Galaxy at the National Stadium this past Saturday.

Rollers 2018/19 BTC league campaign have been impressive thus far as they are still at the summit of the log despite their loss over the weekend. The Galaxy loss was their second, having lost to the other mining team, Orapa United. However, they have already reached the semi-finals of the Mascom Top 8.

Moalosi told Sun Sport that this season is not going to be a walk in the path, “It is not easy being the defending Champions as you become the team to beat, every team will try hard not to give you space to play or attack hence all the games we play become a mammoth task,” said Moalosi.

Moalosi further stated that being eliminated from the Confederations of African Football (CAF) Champions league early was a blessing in disguise, “We are now out of the CAF Champions league and we can now focus on doing well in the domestic league and cup tournament (Mascom Top 8).

In addition, we need to double our efforts as players so that we reach our ultimate goals,” he said.
Quizzed about his individual goals as a player despite picking so many injuries this season, he said, “Injuries are part of the game, it only depends on every player as to how you respond to it, I am always positive regardless of the circumstances I come across. I want to increase my goal tally and hopefully improve my assists as well,” explained.

However, Jwaneng Galaxy Captain, Olebogeng Malebye who scored a marvellous curler on the day said they are going to give Rollers a run for their money this season, “We are going to fight to death to try and leapfrog Rollers and eventually win the league as it has been our aim for a long time. And finally, we managed to beat them after a very long time trying with no success,” said Malebye.

Jwaneng Galaxy’s season is slowly improving as they are now second on the log, and Orapa United seems to be struggling a bit but the league is still open. Another round of BTC Premiership league matches is expected to continue this coming weekend with a couple of interesting fixtures to look out to including Township Rollers and Notwane FC on Friday at Molepolole and Security Systems and Mochudi Centre Chiefs on Saturday at the same venue, just to mention a few.

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