'hands off bartlett'

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

Kaizer Chiefs' coach Muhsin Ertugral has pleaded with Amakhosi supporters to be patient with players, especially striker Shaun Bartlett.

Bartlett, whose contract expires in June, has been a victim of booing by Amakhosi's hard-to-please supporters for a long time.

And this is not the first time that coaches expressed concern over the booing. When Ernst Middendrop was at the helm he made a similar plea, but it fell on deaf ears.

Ertugral said Bartlett was a good player who does not want to miss the chances created or provided for him.

"I can assure you that he does not want to miss those chances. Actually there's not a single player who enters the field to lose or not to contribute to his team's success.

"The problem is that he is so desperate that he ends up making mistakes. The fans' booing affects me as a coach and it also has a negative impact on other players.

"Fans must know that whenever a coach makes a change, he does so because he understands players better than them.

"It is wrong for supporters to demand changes when a player has made a mistake because we are not building those players. Be patient with the players and they will deliver," said Ertugral.

He also revealed that Chiefs had 11 players whose contracts will be expiring at the end of the current season. He said the management will start negotiating with some of them in the next couple of weeks.

The players include Bartlett, Cyril Nzama, David Obua, Rotson Kilambe, Serge Djehoua, Arthur Zwane, Gerald Sibeko, Jimmy Tau, Fabian McCarthy, Markus Boecskor and Ditheko Mototo. However, Ertugral could not be drawn into discussing which of these players were on his plans.

But players whose contracts will not be renewed include Austrian goalkeeper, Boecskor, Kilambe, Djehoua (who is likely to stay at Thanda Royal Zulu).