Gatewate gives Likuena big send-off
Gateway Restaurant owned by former Lesotho Finance Minister Dr. Timothy Thahane, on Tuesday gave Likuena a big send-off when it delivered a sumptuous breakfast for the entire national team.
Likuena will begin their Hollywoodbets COSAFA Cup Group C campaign against Mauritius in Durban, South Africa, tomorrow.
They will be hoping to maintain their dominance over the Islanders, having beaten them 2-1 and 3-0 respectively in the 2022 and 2016 editions of the tournament.
Veteran forward Jane Thabantšo scored in both fixtures, where in 2016, he became the holder of the quickest goal in the history of the COSAFA Cup, scoring in the 34th second of the game as Lesotho clinched a comfortable 3-0 over Mauritius.
The then Moses Maliehe coached side went on to win their group with nine points after beating Angola and Malawi in their second and third games of Group B respectively.
Speaking at the breakfast, Dr. Thahane expressed his delight at hosting the national team prior to their departure to Durban and likened their journey to his while studying in the United States, where most of his classmates had never had of a country called Lesotho.
He revealed that he played football as well as boxing as a youngster but could not make the grade and decided to focus on his studies.
“We are very excited to hosts you before you depart for Durban and for some of us who have travelled the world, when I first left Lesotho to go study abroad, I got to be asked about my country a lot,” Thahane said.
“But I would be told that there is no country and I had to walk around with a map to show them Lesotho and even those from Africa didn’t know about Lesotho.
“With time everyone knew about Lesotho and even when I was voted the vice president students union at the University, people asked, where does he come from? It’s you the players who can define yourself in the field of play.”
Thahane reminded the Likuena players that they will also be representing their family and should know that wearing the country’s badge is a big responsibility.
“We as Gateway Restaurant wish you well and you should remember that your families as well will be looking at you to represent them well,” added Dr. Thahane.
“I know it won’t be easy, but you have the talent and ability, and you should remember that you are representing all of us,” he said.
LeFA Secretary General Mokhosi Mohapi stated the ball is in the court of the players to engrave their names in the history books of football in the country.
“We have done our part as the Association and the ball is now in your court to fail or success at the tournament and make history yourselves,” the LeFA Secretary General said.
“For some of you, this is your last chance to make write good stories of your careers or be remembered as the worst generation to have played for the national team.
“Go there and represent Basotho to the best of your abilities and on behalf of the leadership of the Lesotho Football Association, I wish you the best of luck and I hope you make us proud at the tournament,” he said.