Lesotho national team coach Moses Maliehe has called on his charges to dig deep to end their hoodoo against Zimbabwe in Wednesday COSAFA Cup semi-final showdown.
The two countries will clash at Peter Mokaba Stadium.
Zimbabwe has dominated clashes between the two countries dating back to the final of the competition in 2000.
The Warriors defeated Lesotho 6-0 on aggregate in the final of the then tournament that was played over two legs, while they also won the last two meetings in the semi-finals of the 2013 and 2017 editions of the regional showpiece respectively.
In their last meeting at the tournament, Lesotho and Zimbabwe produced a seven goal thriller that the Warriors won 4-3 on their way to clinching their fifth title at the tournament.
However, the Crocodiles were able to get their revenge winning 1-0 in an international friendly match played in Maseru in November 2017 and Maliehe is confident that was the turning point for Lesotho
“We came to the tournament with one goal and that goal was to get to the final,” Maliehe told COSAFA.com.
“Nothing has changed as far as that target is concerned and we will do all that it takes to get to the final when we take on Zimbabwe on Wednesday.”
The Lesotho mentor said he is happy to once again go into the match as underdogs like it was the case in the quarterfinals against Swaziland.
“We were still underdogs against Swaziland and people did not give us a chance because they were 19 places ahead of us in the FIFA rankings, but we showed that we are a better team,” Maliehe said.
“The motivation is still the same against Zimbabwe and we want to prove that the win in the friendly match last year was not a fluke. It’s time to end the dominance that they have had against us for good.
“We know that they are a very good side and expect a tough match against them, but it’s nothing new because they brought a strong squad for that friendly match we won last year.
“All that we need is to go into the match and fight for our flag because the dream is to make it the final of this year’s competition,” he said.
Lesotho booked a place in the semi-finals following a 1-0 win over Swaziland in the quarterfinals while Zimbabwe defeated Botswana 3-1 on penalties to set-up a meeting with the Crocodiles.
By Mikia Kalati