Lesotho braced for tough night against star studded Cote D’voire
Lesotho coach Veselin Jelusic says he expects a difficult match when his charges take on a star-studded Cote D’voire in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations encounter scheduled for Dobsonville Stadium on Thursday night.
‘Likuena’, as the Lesotho team is affectionately known, went down 2-0 to Comoros in their opening match of Group H, while the Elephants got off to a winning start beating Zambia 3-1.
The experienced Serbian coach admitted that his side will have to dig deep to frustrate the experienced West African country boasting some of the biggest football names in the continent.
“As you know, all their players are experienced professionals, who play for strong European clubs and leagues,” the Lesotho coach said.
“With their quality, we can expect dominance in terms of ball possession and great pressure towards our goals throughout the game.”
He stated that his side will have to be very organised throughout the match to grind a positive result against the Jean-Louis Gasset coached side in the first ever meeting between the two countries.
“What we can do is to defend in an organised and persistent manner as well as to try neutralise their attack as much as possible. At the same time, we will have to use our opportunities on counter attacks,” Jelusic stated.
Lesotho is set to welcome back striker Katleho Makateng who suffered a concussion in the recent warm-up match against Namibia, where they beat the Brave Warriors 2-1.
The 23-year-old was outstanding in the Lesotho’s Vodacom Premier league netting 20 goals in his debut season of topflight football, playing for LDF, who finished the campaign on third position.
“Unfortunately, due to injury sustained in the training match against Namibia, Makateng was not able to train with us until two days ago, that means caution in his inclusion in the team.
“It is possible that he might come into the game, but we are still going to decide about that,” he said.