“It’s a rebirth. People will see a new Lebo, not the old one.”
These are the words of Strasbourg striker Lebo Mothiba, who finally made his long-awaited return to action after almost two years on the sidelines with a knee injury.
The 25-year-old came on in the last 15 minutes of the match to make his first appearance in 673 days when Strasbourg suffered a 1-0 defeat against Montpellier at the Mosson Stadium in the Last 16 of the Coupe de France on Sunday.
Interestingly, Mothiba’s return was against Montpellier, the same team he sustained the long term setback – injury back in February 2020 in a Ligue 1 encounter. And the striker was supposed to return to action in September but suffered a hamstring injury which delayed his progress.
The South African hitman was happy like a fat kid at a buffet and promised Strasbourg supporters goals. “I’m hungry for the ball and goals,” he said with excitement.
Mothiba last found the back of the net in December 2019 against Toulouse, and he is delighted to be back, eager to get going – shake the net.
“I feel magnificent, nickel. It’s just duels from time to time that I’m afraid; it’s the game. But on the races, the passes, the strikes, I feel good,” added Mothiba.
“I am very, very happy. It was very, very long. But I was patient; I continued to work and believe in me.”
Mothiba’s Strasbourg teammate and captain Dimitri Liénard encouraged the forward to continue working hard to ” find the rhythm “.
“I hope he will bring us all his know-how, that is to say, take depth,” said Liénard.
“He is another type of attacker that we do not have. I am happy for him, even if the work is not finished. He must not give up,” he concluded.