One of Botswana’s budding footballing talents, Thatayaone Ramatlapeng says he is enjoying life at the FC Senec academy in Slovakia. The versatile 18 year old player says he has settled well to life in the Slovakia and is now targeting a place in the FC Senec senior team in the future.
After plying his trade with Santos as a loanee in the be Mobile Premier League before the team was relegated this past year, the youngster was then whisked off for trials with the Senec academy in Slovakia by his agent Moran Nthoiwa.
Having impressed during trials, the team finally took the youngster into their academy where he is playing in its Under 19 premier league. So far, the youngster has made only three appearances for the FC Senec under 19 team, scoring one goal in the process. Speaking in an interview with Sunday Standard, the youngster says despite the language barrier, he is happy at FC Senec. “They have really welcomed me to the team and they are doing their best to take care of me. Where there is something I need to say or hear, there are some players who know English and are able to translate for me,” the youngster explains. Ramatlapeng also alluded that he has learnt a little bit of the basic language used in the training ground to enable him to communicate with fellow players and management.
With just only three appearances for the team since he got his international clearance, Ramatlapeng says he is delighted with the progress he has made thus far. After struggling to get his international clearance in what nearly became of tug of war between him and his former club Home Sweepers, the youngster finally got his clearance three weeks ago and has since been able to make his debut for his new club. Despite scoring a goal in his debut, the youngster could, however not help much as his team, which was perched at the bottom of the Under 19 league table, lost 2 ÔÇô 4 to Michalovce U19. He says so far, signs are that with hard work, he will be able to make a debut for the senior team in a few months’ time. “They have invited me to train with the senior team a couple of times already and I am hopeful I will make my debut with them in a few months’ time,” the youngster says. He says he believes he has impressed his new technical team as they have highlighted that they will start casting an eye on Botswana to unearth talents like his for the FC Senec teams.
Playing in his preferred attacking Midfielder position for his new team, the youngster said he expects to flourish more in his new environment. “There is everything in place here for me to succeed. As with other countries in Europe, the facilities here are top class and there is everything I will need to succeed in my career as a footballer,” he continued. With him now in Europe, Ramatlapeng says he intends to seize the moment and use FC Senec as his gateway into the big European leagues. “My target is that in three years time, I will have progressed enough and made a move to a stronger league than the Slovakian league,” he says.