Labasa is really not having the season they expected; the club is currently tied in points with Navua at the bottom of the table of 2020 edition of Fiji’s top-tier Vodafone Premier League. The Babasiga Lions were unable to beat Navua in the latest clash and ended up with a heartbreaking defeat that put their team with clear chances to be relegated to the second-tier Vodafone Senior League.
After a terrible result for Labasa, the head coach Ronil Lal said something unexpected: “my players are not listening up“, in an interview to a local TV station – click here to see the interview. The coach also stated after the defeat to Navua to FBC that “Individual errors cost us, the second goal against us was just an individual error. I think so players will need to step up, it is not just about playing on the field but the discipline off the field too. Players need to get serious on how their conduct is on the field and off the field and it is very disheartening to see such a good team doing so poorly.” Lal was highly praised last year after guiding his team to Battle of Giants and Inter-District Championship titles.
Oceania Football Center talked to some important players of Labasa’s squad about the statement from Lal; the general outcome from the conversations was denying that players were not listening to the coach’s game instructions – opting to defend players’ side in the situation.
This weekend, Labasa is going to have another do or die match as they face the 6th placed-side Nasinu in the process. The Giant Killers are just one point above Labasa in the rankings – a win can give a relief for Labasa and its supporters while another defeat might the continuation of their nightmare.
There was certainly something wrong happening to Labasa, it seems like now there are some disagreements between players and staff. While the confusion is not solved, Labasa may continue in this unexpected situation: fighting against relegation.