Following their qualification for the promotional play-offs, Eleven Angels and Mochudi Centre Chiefs will this weekend log horns in their first leg match of their two legged battle to determine which team amongst the two gets promoted into premier league next season.
It will be a battle of North against South as Chiefs will play against Angels on Home and away fixture scheduled for June 12th and 18th respectively. Magosi will host Angels at River Plate grounds during first leg while the latter Angels will welcome Magosi at Francistown City Stadium for the second leg.
The play-offs will determine who between Chiefs and Angels will join Nico United and Holy-Ghost as next seasons’ fresh entrants into the premier league. The trio will replace, Notwane, Gilport Lions and MR Highlanders which have relegated from the premier league.
Holy Ghost on Saturday qualified for the Premier league on a goal difference of +22 against +16 of Chiefs, with both teams finishing the league with 45 points a piece. Chiefs needed more than 5 goals to get automatic qualification provided Holy Ghost lost or won 1-0 against Taung Young Strikers. Holy Ghost walloped Taung Young Strikers 3-1 while Magosi won 1-0 against Red Sparks.
Eleven Angels on the other hand qualified for the play-offs after whipping Maun Terrors 2 goals to nil in their 21st game that was played in Maun Sports complex on the 28th last month. Angels completed the Debswana First Division North with 29 points and the club from the 22 games played won 11 games, lost 5 and had 6 draws.
In an interview with Times Sports, Eleven Angels Coach Seemo Mpatane said it was for the first time that they qualified for the play-offs and their intention is to make history by defeating the Kgatleng giants in order to book themselves a spot in the Premier League next season.
“We are ready to battle against Mochudi Centre Chiefs, we will go back and work hard in preparations for the game because we also want to make history for ourselves and whatever happens along the way we will deliver our best,” Mpatane assured.
The club believes their 1-1 draw against Calendar Stars on Saturday was a preparation match towards their play-offs as they used young and unused players as a way to rest some of their key players for next week.
Mpatane said it was through patience and hard work that they have managed to qualify for the playoffs. He expressed proud to have qualified for the playoffs looking at the fact that it was a very tough journey playing against some of the experienced teams such as Nico United, Peace Makers and Sankoyo Bucks.
Though the team faced some challenges throughout the season such as long distance travels to attend the away games, the coach attributed the players’ patience and dedication led to their success.
Mochudi Centre Chiefs Chairperson Edwin Mothulatshipi is adamant of a win, and qualify for the premier league next season. He said though Eleven Angels has good and young players, his team on the other hand has the experience and desire to end their 3-year drought absence in the elite league.
“We have a good morale boost from the supporters of Mochudi Centre Chiefs and you know how much they want the team in the premier league,” he noted. The club’s attacking midfielder, Khumoetsile Kufigwa also said that it has been a tough season but the boys will overcome and ultimately gain Premier League Status next season through the upcoming promotional playoffs against Eleven Angels.
Meanwhile Local Sport Analyst, Jimmy George is of the view that Eleven Angels has been consistent for the past two years as compared to Mochudi Centre Chiefs which only started improving in their last five games. He stated that over a long period of time Mochudi Centre Chiefs has not been doing well and they are currently under pressure, therefore they might find themselves losing against Eleven Angels which gained experience in the Orange FA Cup playing against some of the big teams.