Molefi Ntseki sounded so much caution about Kaizer Chiefs’ chances that you were left wondering just how he is going to convince his players they have the beating AmaZulu.
Unpredictable is the game of football is, you would still expect that the coach of a team which only recently sauntered to victory against another would look ahead to their next encounter cock-ahoop – confident he has his adversaries’ number.
Not so Molefi Ntseki. The Kaizer Chiefs coach gave the impression yesterday that his team were about to play their toughest match this weekend, despite the fact they are to face an AmaZulu outfit they thumped 3-0 a little under two months ago.
Speaking at a media briefing at the PSL head offices in Johannesburg, the former school teacher sounded so much caution about his team’s chances that you were left wondering just how he is going to convince his players they have the beating of Usuthu in Saturday’s Carling Knockout clash at the FNB Stadium.
Next Kaizer Chiefs Match!
⚽️Kaizer Chiefs vs. AmaZulu FC
🗓️Saturday 21 October 2023
🎟R50 – Ticketpro, Spar – https://t.co/nSBHeT3ji1#Amakhosi4Life #Khosified pic.twitter.com/Janr0bJB5r
— Kaizer Chiefs (@KaizerChiefs) October 18, 2023
“We are looking forward to this important match against AmaZulu,” said Ntseki.
“We have seen them play good football since we won 3-0 against them. There has been a lot of improvement on the side of AmaZulu.
“When I look back and reflect, they gave us a very tough game. On the day, the plan worked for us, and we managed to get the three goals.”
Why would you describe it as “managed” when you have scored three goals past your opponents, really? Ntseki went on: “We are looking forward to another tough match, but the tactical preparations have gone well going into this match.”
With Amakhosi still in search of a trophy, having last won one eight years ago, Ntseki knows that the new Cup competition is an opportunity to bring some joy to long-suffering Chiefs fans whom he is struggling to win over since taking over the hot seat at the beginning of this season.
But it was hard, listening to him, to believe he truly has a plan that will bring about the desired change in fortunes for Chiefs.
“We have not been winning in the Cup games
… Now is the time for us to turn the corner. It comes with hard work, proper preparation and the respect you give to your opponents. But at the same time, there is only one team that has to win,” Ntseki said.
Expectations that the last sentence would be followed by “and that team is Chiefs” remained just that. Instead, the former Bafana Bafana coach regurgitated a thesis that is fast becoming a hallmark of his media addresses in explaining the club’s inability to score, like they did against AmaZulu in August.
“Goal-scoring is a problem,” Ntseki – whose team’s last result was a home defeat against Cape Town City – sang, although just about everyone in the room had heard the song before.
And what followed thereafter was akin to a stuck record.
“But at the same time, it is the preparation and the training, and not just physically, but the mental side of it,” Ntseki said.
“We always talk of composure. Where do you apply composure? It is important when it comes to individual players, when they are faced with the situation where they have to score goals and the composure does not come in, the technical execution is not what it is expected.
“When you miss one goal, you worry about missing the next one, and you end up missing more.”
Someone please tell Ntseki it is his job to ensure his players stop worrying and learn to be composed in front of goal.