Gaborone United (GU) supporters are hoping for the best when their side meets league champions Mochudi Centre Chiefs in the Coca-Cola Cup final to be played at UB Stadium on August 4.
Since the inception of the tournament 21 years ago, the Reds have not lifted the cup despite appearing in the final twice in the past.
In 1993, when GU was at its best, their supporters watched in disbelief as they were hammered 4-1 by traditional rivals Township Rollers at the National Stadium.
Years later, GU suffered heartbreak as they were beaten on penalties by Mogoditshane Fighters. In recent times, the Reds have struggled to reach the final and at times were eliminated by lower division sides.
Having lost out on the league and Mascom Top 8, GU supporters believe that the Coke Cup final is their chance to take something home and save face. The Reds managed to reach the final after beating stubborn BDF XI 2-1 at SSKB Stadium in Mogoditshane on Saturday through goals from Sageby Sandaka and Ronald Chikomo.
GU goalkeeper and captain, Noah Maposa, believes that this is a chance for their side to break the Coke jinx, more especially that this is the last edition of the oldest cup in Botswana football.
“This is the time to make our supporters happy and keep this cup for good. I have no doubt that we have what it takes to do it for our supporters,” said Maposa.
He pointed out that the win against BDF XI has given them confidence because BDF XI is not an easy team to overcome.
Maposa tasted Coke glory in 2008 when he was still playing for Chiefs.
“We’ll have to work hard because it’s going to be a tough task playing against Chiefs. But I believe they (Chiefs) will have to come up with something extra special to beat us,” said Maposa.
Meanwhile, Chiefs reached the final after overcoming their nemesis Township Rollers 1-0 at UB Stadium on Saturday afternoon. It was Pontsho ‘Piro’ Moloi who scored a late winner for the Kgatleng giants to send hundreds of their supporters into a frenzy.
Chiefs’ midfielder Dirang Moloi had a superb game in the middle of the pack and won the hearts of the supporters with his sublime passes. ┬áIt was a performance which left some supporters saying that he deserves a call-up to the national team.
The defeat to Chiefs left most Rollers’ supporters calling for coach Mike Sithole’s head. Others even made their anger clear to the management of Rollers. According to sources close to Rollers’ management, it is┬ápossible that Sithole might not be on the bench when they take on ECCO City Greens in the Mascom Top 8 final on Sunday.