Moerane embraces Likuena leadership role
Lesotho goalkeeper Sekhoane Moerane has welcomed the leadership role after being named one of his national team captains prior to the final fixtures of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier.
The 26-year-old led his country for the first time earlier in September as Ivory Coast had to dig deep to clinch a narrow 1-0 victory over Lesotho at the Stade Laurent Pokou in San Pedro.
His exploits for Likuena, as the Lesotho national team is affectionately known, hogged the headlines in the first leg encounter between the two countries, where the Kingdom country frustrated highly ranked Ivory Coast to a goalless draw at Dobsonville Stadium.
Moerane has grown in leaps and bounds to become Lesotho first choice goalkeeper since making his debut in a friendly match against Malawi in 2019.
“It was an honour and a big motivation for me to be handed the captain’s armband in a match against Ivory Coast playing them in their backyard,” Moerane said.
“It came with goosebumps, but I got a lot of support and motivation from my teammates, which made the job very easy for me on the day.”
The goalkeeper admitted that the role came with big expectations having played a pivotal role as Lesotho made it to the final of the COSAFA Cup, where he was named Goalkeeper of the Tournament.
“I knew that the new role as one of the leaders of the national team would come with a lot of expectations from my teammates and the nation at large,” the goalkeeper stated.
“I had to embrace it especially after our performance at the COSAFA Cup and make sure that I maintain the same level of performance, which I think I did though we lost 1-0 to Ivory Coast.
“It was a performance that our people in Lesotho were proud of and the fact that it coincided with the opening of the new Stadium in San Pedro came with a lot of pressure for both teams,” he said.