Telkom Knockout Victory
It was pleasing for me and the team to lift the Telkom Knockout for the second time in the same year. Our objective was always to defend the trophy and I am happy we achieved that on the year the Club is celebrating its 40th Anniversary.
I would like to take this opportunity and congratulate the whole Technical Team including guys like Mingi Motaung, David Khopotse, Richard Langa, Sipho Nkejani, Kenny Dambe and “Shosho” (Mcedisi Mackenzie) and others who play a crucial role behind the scenes.
I am also happy for my players. I was happy that they carried the instructions to the field of play…we had done individual analysis on Orlando Pirates before the final and everything worked out very well.
We were solid at the back, convincing in the middle of the park and ruthless upfront on the night. It was important that we score first and when we scored the second goal I knew that they would not come back.
Sthembiso Ngcobo played his best game since joining us before the start of the season. I am happy for him because he has worked very hard on his fitness and now he is starting to reap the rewards of hard work. Despite scoring a brace on Saturday, I still believe that he has not reached his peak form.
On Saturday we passed the ball around with confidence and we took our chances. It is always my wish that we play like we did on Saturday in all the games. This is something that I am discussing with the players. They know that each and every game is as important as playing against Orlando Pirates.
Lastly I would like to once more thank our fans who almost filled the FNB Stadium on Saturday. I heard that close to 92 000 fans attended the final. This is good for the game as earlier in the season the numbers were not that impressive. I am positive that the fans will start returning to the stadium to support the team.
Condolences to Siphiwe Tshabalala
I spoke to Siphiwe Tshabalala last week, asking him if I should leave him out of my plans for the Telkom Final. The week ahead of the final was very difficult for him as his mother was in hospital. However, he told me that he was going to be ready to do the business for the team.
I am must admit I was very impressed with Tshabalala’s commitment and the attitude he showed at training ahead of the final.
He was without a doubt one of our best players on Saturday. I was also pleased to see him scoring in open play. I would like to join millions of South Africans in sending my profound condolences to Siphiwe and his family for losing his mother, Rebecca.
Family comes first and Tshabalala is at home with his family…he will definitely miss the trip to Bloemfontein this coming weekend.
I would like to congratulate Itumeleng Khune, Jimmy Tau, Reneilwe Letsholonyane and Knowledge Musona for winning individual awards at the Prize Giving Ceremony on Tuesday.
I am sorry I could not stay during the awards. I was there 20 minutes before the start of the event with the whole Technical Team there was not enough seating.
I was asked to sit with the PSL - I could not sit at the Main Table leaving my assistants outside. I feel that the organizers should have organized seating for the whole Technical Team.
For me though, the whole team deserved individual awards including the players who did not play during this tournament. This is for their contribution and keeping those who are playing on their toes. The team has shown tremendous spirit throughout the tournament. I am very proud of all my players.
Preview: Free State Stars
I hear that Kaizer Chiefs always struggle to win their next game after winning a trophy. This was not the case this year though when we won the Telkom Cup in April as immediately after winning the cup we had to play SuperSport United in Nedbank Cup and we won the game.
We are going to Free State Stars with a mentality to win the game. We are quite aware that Free State Stars under the tutelage of my good friend, Steve Kompela will not be pushovers after we knocked them out of the cup recently. Our focus though is on us. The Telkom victory is behind us and we are now 100% focused on the future, which is the Absa Premiership.