Kaizer Chiefs coach Middendorp not too concerned about injuries in his team

These injuries have forced Middendorp to change his starting line ups.
These injuries have forced Middendorp to change his starting line ups.
Image: ©Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

Kaizer Chiefs coach Ernst Middendorp is not too concerned about the number of injuries in his team‚ saying they have helped to intensify competition.

Goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune‚ right back Reeve Frosler‚ left back Siphosakhe Ntiyantiya‚ midfielder George Maluleka and striker Samir Nurkovic are some of the key players who’ve suffered an assortment of injuries.

These injuries have forced Middendorp to change his starting line ups.

In their 2-0 win against Golden Arrows on Tuesday‚ the Chiefs coach was forced to start at right back with SA U20 international Njabulo Blom in the absence of experienced right backs Ramahlwe Mphahlele and Kgotso Moleko who have not fully recovered.

Middendorp was impressed with Blom’s performance and said that’s the indication the competition they have in the team.

“We selected Njabulo Blom who was in Poland at the World Cup (with SA U20s) and he did a good job over there‚” said Middendorp.

“But this is a normal procedure now. We’re not forgetting it at Chiefs and that is always what coaches should do.

“It’s fine to have experienced players like (Bernard) Parker‚ (Willard) Katsande and so on.

“But we must always know how far Njabulo Blom is? How far is Happy Mashiane? And how far the biggest is one of the biggest talents I’ve worked with in terms of his creativity… Nkosingiphile Ngcobo.

“Ngcobo is back into it and at the same stage like Ramahlwe Mphahlele.

“They are all knocking on the door. It’s good for us. This situation (of injuries) that we have now is not the only one. We’ll have it in the future.

“If you go into January and starting on the 4th of January as it look at the moment we probably have seven games in January.

“You cannot send the players all the same into it. You need these guys‚ you need this competition.”

Middendorp said he was happy with the coming Fifa international break as it will give the injured players some time to recover.

“What we do is very clear‚” said Middendorp. “We know we have a long season.

“We are loading the players until the middle of October‚ that’s our plan. Then we go into maintenance.

“Now we go into it and we have to manage it. As long as we have somehow six to ten days‚ short term.

“It happens all the time. What can you do with Samir (Nurkovic) injury? You crashed into it and you’re told three weeks (out). That’s what it is.

“I’m definitely not concerned at all. We just go through it every day after the game looking in detail into it.

“We will continue with the loading and we’ll continue with our planning.”

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