Bafana Bafana striker Lebogang Mothiba wishes he had more talent


Mothiba has enjoyed a stunning rise over the course of 2018, after returning to Lille from a fruitful loan spell with French second division side Valenciennes in January before recently moving to Strasbourg at the end of August.

The 22-year-old Johannesburg-born forward, who has been based in France since 2014, has this season already netted five Ligue 1 goals – four of which has come in just six outings with his new side.

He has also become a staple in Stuart Baxter’s squad, given the variation in his play as compared to the more mobile options of Percy Tau, Dino Ndlovu and Phakamani Mahlambi.

However, Mothiba wishes he had the sort of natural ability that some of his compatriots and other locally-based strikers possess, as he outlines the challenges marksmen the world over often face.

“Being a striker is about learning, it’s not natural. It’s about working hard and repeating the same thing each and every day,” says Mothiba.

“In South Africa, there are good strikers. South Africans are very talented; some players here have other talent that I wish I had, but I’m just a hard worker and always pushing, you know.

“But, being a striker is very difficult because you can play a few games and you start scoring and then people will say, ‘Yes, this one is a proper striker, he’s good for us’.

“After a few games, maybe six or seven, you don’t score, and people start saying, ‘No, he’s not that good, his performances are poor’. So, it’s not an easy position.

“We have to be patient with strikers, give them time to get used to their teammates and with time he will start scoring.”