Premiership ready to quench 19 month thirst

Football begins
Football begins

Local football kicks off tomorrow after 19 months of inactivity. Despite close to two years of no play, teams are ready to get the ball rolling. The 2021-2022 season promises to bring pitched battles for the championship, the relegation and the coveted Top 8 places. Mmegi Sport Correspondent, KABELO BORANABI takes a closer look at the 16 contestants

BDF XI

Coach: Letang 'Rasta' Kgengwenyane Colours: Green and Red Home Ground: Molepolole Sports Complex Key Players: Keeagile Kobe, Thabiso Khunwane, Abi Ramodiane, Pelontle Lerole Prospect: Rasta has returned to the Army Boys' dugout for yet another stint. There is continuity in the team based at the Mogoditshane Barracks with few additions from the previous season. 'Matebele' have over the years proven to be a tough nut to crack and are once again expected to pull surprise results in the upcoming campaign. Their best finish will be an improvement from the previous season's eighth spot, as they look unlikely to challenge for the title. Probable finish: 4th-8th

Extension Gunners


Coach: Molefe Motlhala Colours: Black and White Home Ground: Lobatse Sports Complex Key Players: Dirang Moloi, Lesego Lubinda, Kago Rasuping, Lungisani Fanyana Prospect: Mapantsula are a team on the mend after surviving relegation just by a whisker in the previous campaign. This is a squad with a mixture of Premiership 'rejects' and an abundance of youthful talent. It will be a tough ask for Gunners to break into the Top 8 but they look set to go steps further than the 2020-2021 12th spot. Probable finish: 12th-14th

Gaborone United

Coach: Innocent Morapedi Colours: Red and White Home Ground: National Stadium Key Players: Mpho Kgaswane, Thatayaone Kgamanyane, Godwin Bonsu, Lebogang Ditsele Prospect: The Reds were the busiest in the transfer window. The signing of Kgaswane, Ditsele and Thato Kebue sounds GU as serious contenders for the title. There is competition for every position in the team. Morapedi joins Pontsho Moloi on the technical bench as head coach. Moloi had guided the Reds to their highest finish in recent years; the fifth spot just five points behind title winners, Jwaneng Galaxy. Probable finish: 1st-4th

Gilport Lions

Coach: Paradzayi Madivenga Colours: Purple and Orange Home Ground: Otse Stadium Key Players: Lone Taele, Thabiso Keaikitse, Kesekile Chivese, Richard Mampane Prospect: Retaining head coach Madivenga was the greatest signing in the off-season. Under his tutelage, the team has shown improvement as the coach has put faith in young players. This season, the Lions have the youngest squad in the Premiership but do not look to cause any upsets. The team will once again be in or around the relegation positions with a top eight finish looking out of reach. Probable finish: 13th-16th

Jwaneng Galaxy

Coach: Morena Ramoreboli Colours: Red and Black Home Ground: Galaxy Stadium Key Players: Thabo Leinanyane, Ezekiel Morake, Gape Mohutsiwa, Wendell Rudath Prospect: The defending champions look like an oiled machine early on, more especially after heroic displays in the CAF Champions League. Coach Ramoreboli will be looking to wear off the 'giant slayer' tag and make the Galaxy Stars giants themselves. The off-season signings notably, Namibian striker, Rudath have settled well at the club. Galaxy is the best prepared team in the league after tasting competitive football in the CAF competitions. Probable finish: 1st-4th

Mahalapye Railway Highlanders

Coach: Blessing Moyo Colours: Purple and White Home Ground: Serowe Sports Complex Key Players: Kutlo Molelowamodimo, Brian Tukula, Botlhe Rakaki Prospect: Highlanders managed to squeeze into the top half in the previous campaign, their highest ever finish. The team is under a seasoned tactician in Moyo. The Zimbabwean has managed to pull results in odd situations regardless of the quality of his squad. They may not reach the same highest as the previous season whilst they will need to work extra hard to avoid the drop. Probable finish: 9th-12th

Masitaoka

Coach: Nelson Olebile Colours: Blue and White Home Ground: Molepolole Sports Complex Key Players: Patrick Kaunda, Kobamelo Kebaikanye, Fortunate Thulare, Oabile Makopo Prospect: In their first ever elite league season, Majatlhaga are boosted by the arrival of experienced players such as Kaunda, Makopo and Thulare. Coach, Olebile is also returning to Premiership football after stints in the second tier. Surely with that squad, a top eight finish will be their goal this season, but a goal they may just find hard to reach. Probable finish: 9th-12th

Mogoditshane Fighters

Coach: Thaloba Nthaga Home Ground: Molepolole Sports Complex Key Players: Khumbulani Madziba, Kabo Ngongorego, Tumo Kgosiedirang, Edwin Mokibe Prospect: The Samba Boys are returning to the elite league after close to a decade in the second-tier football league. Their stay in the top-tier could be short-lived as they look like early relegation contenders. The team's coach, Nthaga has been around and done it, but it will be a tough ask for him to keep the team in the Premiership after this season. Probable finish: 13th-16th

Morupule Wanderers

Coach: Daniel 'Chicco' Nare Colours: Purple and Orange Home Ground: Serowe Sports Complex Key Players: Pako Gaofose, Comfort Dikupa, Tumelo Mazebedi, Leteng Legopelo Prospect: Chico joins the team after finishing fourth in the last campaign. It is a totally different set-up and could come along with slow results. Their off-season campaign has shown that the team can put up a fight, getting results against the bigger teams. Bafana Ba Magala could improve from last season's relegation battle to a top-half spot. Probable finish: 9th-12th

Notwane

Coach: Gilbert Mushangazike Colours: Gold and Black Home Ground: Molepolole Sports Complex Key Players: Sthembile Mbuqe, Brian Botsang, Kaone van der Westhuizen, Raymond Israel Prospect: The Toronto Boys look to have sorted their defensive problems with the off-season signings that include van der Westhuizen and Botsang from Rollers. Their main problem could be in attack after the team lost striker, Thabiso Boti. The team had played good football under the duo of Mushangazike and Oupa Kowa. They might as well be in the relegation mix but would cause problems from those eyeing the top 8 finish. Probable finish: 9th-12th

Orapa United

Coach: Mogomotsi 'Teenage' Mpote Colours: Orange and White Home Ground: Itekeng Stadium Key Players: Tapiwa Nyamanjiva, Thero Setsile, Mbatshi Elias, Onkabetse Makgantai Prospect: Not many teams will fancy an away trip to the Iketeng Stadium this season. The Ostriches have held an impressive home record across the previous season. This time around, there had not been too many additions to the squad as they eye consistency. Head coach Mpote could win his second league championship; but just if his side improves on the road. Probable fnish: 1st-4th

Police XI

Coach: Maitumelo 'Junior' Letlamoreng Colours: Maroon and Gold Home Ground: Otse Stadium Key Players: Elias Nyambi, Hendrick Moyo, Tapiwa Gadibolae, Moemedi Moatlhaping Prospect: The 'traditional' mid-table finish once again looks likely for the Jungles Kings. The team does not have the firepower to challenge for the honours whilst they have enough ammunition to stay away from the relegation ruckus. Probable finish: 4th-8th

Prisons XI

Coach: Sepheko Motlhagodi Colours: Green and White Home Ground: Otse Stadium Key Players: Mokuye Shakambayo, Kitso Mpuisang, Kelello Kgosimore, Watunwa Muniazo Prospect: Seasoned coach Motlhagodi has managed to escape the relegation axe in the past. In the previous campaign, the team finished sixth. The return of striker Mpuisang who joins on loan from Rollers boosts the team's attacking firepower. The Warders might pull yet another surprise this campaign. Probable finish: 4th-8th

Security Systems

Coach: Kaelo 'Wire' Kaelo Colours: Red and White Home Ground: Lobatse Sports Complex Key Players: Mwampule Masule, Morris Ruzivo, Kenanao 'Floh' Kgetholetsile, Osego Gaotewe Prospect: The technical team setup was shaken after the passing on of coach Keitumetse 'Pio' Paul. Kaelo has since returned to the club as head coach. He faces a tougher assignment to reach the fourth spot the team achieved in the previous season. The signing of Masule and striker Molaodi Tlhalefang has, however, given the team some backbone. Systems will not be contenders this time but they are set for a good season. Probable Finish: 4th-8th

Sua Flamingoes

Coach: Rahman Gumbo Colours: White and Red Home Ground: Obed Itani Chilume Stadium Key Players: Tendai Nyumasi, Goitseone Legopelo, Bophelo Kealeboga, Kealeboga Molebatsi Prospect: For their maiden Premiership season, Flamingoes will be led by title-winning coach Gumbo. He has roped in experienced players like Kealeboga and Molebatsi alongside Nyumasi who has been made captain. The team’s overall lack of experience could be a stumbling block as they look set to be amongst the strugglers in the upcoming campaign. Probable finish: 13th-16th

Township Rollers

Coach: Hassan Oktay Colours: Blue and Yellow Home Ground: Royal Aria Stadium Key Players: Segolame Boy, Mosha Gaolaolwe, Kabelo Dambe, Edwin Moalosi Prospect: Like any other season, record league champions are counted amongst the contenders. The squad has at least five Zebras and the acquisition of Rwanda’s 30-cap striker Jean Bertrand Iradukunda has added to the abundance of experience at the club. Two more foreign strikers have joined Popa, trying to fill a position, which was the team’s weakest in the previous campaign. With all the departments filled, it is now up to Oktay to lead the team to their 17th championship in his debut season. Probable finish: 1st-4th

Editor's Comment
What about employees in private sector?

How can this be achieved when there already is little care about the working conditions of those within the private sector employ?For a long time, private sector employees have been neglected by their employers, not because they cannot do better to care for them, but because they take advantage of government's laxity when it comes to protecting and advocating for public sector employees, giving the cue to employers within the private sector...

Have a Story? Send Us a tip
arrow up