Benni McCarthy is excited, and nervous, for his first game in charge of AmaZulu, when they host Chippa United in the DSTV Premiership on Sunday.
The former Cape Town City coach was appointed to the job on Monday, but watched from the stands as AmaZulu lost to Golden Arrows, with Allan Freese leading the team.
McCarthy took over the reigns officially on Thursday, and he says while the time has been short, he is already pleased with the reactions of the players.
The former Bafana Bafana striker says he wants to get the players to enjoy their football, and he hopes that they can end 2020 on a high note with a good game on Sunday.
Amazulu are 12th on the log currently, on 6 points, one point ahead of 14th placed Chippa.
“Very excited,” McCarthy said in the build-up to the game.
“Very nervous at the same time. But I think, in the two days leading up to the match I’ve had an amazing response from the players. The positivity within the group, I just see a difference in the mentality already.”
“The way we upped the training session, they way we upped the tempo, play a little quicker. And everyone wants to impress, that’s always good, so I’ve enjoyed my first couple of days with the team, and Sunday can’t come any quicker because the longer it takes the more nervous I get.”
“I just want to get this one over and done with, and end 2020 on a very positive note.”
“My thoughts on the game, and a possible three points? I think it’s very possible. We’ve got quality players, and I think just the right direction, if they push into the right direction, positivity, the brand of football I want to play, and the joy I want to bring to their faces.”
“When you step onto a football field people shouldn’t be angry or nervous or sad, football is a game of joy, so I want to bring that back to the players. They must play with smiles on their faces, and I think Sunday is the perfect opportunity for that to happen.”
“So I’m looking forward to Sunday, I’m looking forward just to see what the players can bring from the short time we’ve been together, and what we can achieve – getting three points, moving up the table, from six (points) to nine, and very close to the team that it’s in fourth position.”
“So that’s our goal, that’s our aim, and hopefully on Sunday we’re not going to disappoint like we did on Wednesday.”