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‘I Was Worried After SSU Shaky Start’

SuperSport United CEO Stan Matthews says he was worried sick by the start of his club this season.

SuperSport did not have the best of the start after the return of coach Gavin Hunt, losing two of the opening four league matches to collect only two points.

That sent shivers into the spine of Matthews, but he was always confident under the old horse like Hunt who had seen it all, that they would pick their way up.

SuperSport became the first club to win three matches on the bounce after that early scare, beating Richards Bay, Mamelodi Sundowns and Maritzburg United respectively.

That against Sundowns was sweet as SuperSport were informed during the off-season that they cannot use Grant Magerman, Thabang Sibanyoni and Ricardo Goss, who are all on loan to SuperSport for two seasons from Downs.

The three-time PSL league winners, all won by Hunt during his first stint, are positioned third in the DStv Premiership table with 21 points after 12 matches before the season was halted due to the FIFA World Cup break.

“We didn’t start well at all and after four games we were at the bottom of the log,” said Matthews to the iDiski Times.

“I was very concerned but Gavin Hunt had just arrived. I think it took him a little time to kind of work out a lot of our players and not like before where the whole team had names like when Stuart Baxter was our coach.

“We had Tefu Mashamaite, Morgan Gould, Bongani Khumalo, Onismor Bhasera, Grant Kekana, Dove Wome, Thuso Phala, Dean Furman, Cole Alexander, Michael Morton, Kingston Nkhatha, Jeremy Brockie – we had heavy hitters.

“So Gavin came to us and now (things have changed), there is (Selealo) Rasebotja, Thalente Mbatha, Kegan Johannes, Thapelo Maseko, Luke Fleurs – these are players he never worked with and never knew their qualities. I think that feeling potentially costs us.

“But at the same time, Bash (Bhasera) got injured, which was really difficult for us because we played the first four games with wingback. A young kid like Maseko literally played eight or nine in the PSL and suddenly he is a wingback, so we started shaky.

“I thought we were unlucky because we should have beaten Chippa United, we should have beaten AmaZulu – and I thought we played well against AmaZulu but we got no points.

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“The TS Galaxy game (lost 2-0), Orlando Pirates drew – four games, two points, but Gavin changed the structure, changed the formation, changed the personnel and style a little bit. He brought in a little bit more old players like Siphesihle Ndlovu and Magerman and it was a little bit more experienced.”  

Robin-Duke Madlala
Robin-Duke Madlala
Robin-Duke Madlala is iDiski Times' KwaZulu-Natal-based web journalist. Boasting extensive experience in the South African football landscape, Robin-Duke has previously worked for Kick-Off Magazine, Soccer Laduma, and Daily Sun and Sunday Sun. He specialises in breaking news and transfers around South Africa’s big clubs in KZN.