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27-man Likuena squad readies for AFCON action

Chris Theko

Lesotho Senior National Soccer team Likuena interim coach Leslie Notsi has assembled a 27-man team which has commenced with its preparations for the upcoming 2023 Africa Cup of Nations preliminary round matches home and away against Seychelles scheduled for March.

The Likuena provisional squad which began training this week currently consists only of local-based players.

Notsi stated that the two matches against Seychelles are a must-win for Likuena in order to secure qualification for the group stage of the 2023 tournament to be staged in Ivory Coast.

“The players know how important this match is to us as a country because we have to make it to the group stages of the qualifiers. I’m happy that all the players we called have shown up for training. They all look committed and ready to die for their country,” the Likuena interim coach said.

Meanwhile, it remains unclear where the home game will be hosted for Lesotho with the only international stadium Setsoto Stadium condemned by the Federation of International Football Associations (FIFA).

While the stadium is yet to be attended to, the Lesotho Football Association (LeFA) last week announced that they are already in talks with authorities in neighbouring South Africa to see if the Lesotho home game can be hosted there.

Likuena has never qualified for AFCON and are hoping for a better outcome this time around following recurrent poor performances in previous qualifiers. 

In the last qualifiers Lesotho finished bottom of the group which also consisted of Nigeria, Sierra Leone and Benin.  

*Likuena provisional squad (local based)*

*Goalkeepers*: Teboho Ratibisi (LDF), Sekhoane Moerane (LMPS), Monaheng Ramalefane (Matlama).

*Defenders*: Rethabile Rasethuntsa (Linare), Kopano Tseka, Refiloe Mothae, Thabang Malane (All LCS), John Mohai and Rethabile Mokokoane (Matlama), Basia Makepe (LMPS), Motlomelo Mkhwanazi (Bantu).

*Midfielders*: Lisema Lebokollane, Thabo Mats’oele, Moteloa Khemisi, Jane Thabantšo (Matlama), Tieho Ntulo (Lioli), Lehlohonolo Fothoane, Thabo Lesaoana, Neo Mokhachane, Jane Tšotleho, Tsepang Sefali (Bantu), Tumelo Ngatane (LCS), Letlatsa Moshoeshoe, Koete Mohloai and Tšepo Toloane (LDF).

*Forwards*: Katleho Makateng (LDF) and Teboho Pita (Matlama).

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