Ngcobo draws positives from international duty

Call-ups a motivation for players at struggling Chiefs

Sihle Ndebele Journalist
Nkosingiphile Ngcobo of Kaizer Chiefs tackled by Rodney Ramagalela of Black Leopards during the DStv Premiership match between Kaizer Chiefs and Black Leopards at FNB Stadium on December 09, 2020 in Johannesburg.
Nkosingiphile Ngcobo of Kaizer Chiefs tackled by Rodney Ramagalela of Black Leopards during the DStv Premiership match between Kaizer Chiefs and Black Leopards at FNB Stadium on December 09, 2020 in Johannesburg.
Image: Muzi Ntombela/BackPagePix/Gallo Images

Kaizer Chiefs starlet Nkosingiphile Ngcobo is encouraged that, despite their mediocre form this season, the players are still get recognition from the national teams.

Ngcobo, Happy Mashiane and Reeve Frosler are part of the SA Under-23 squad in a training camp in Durban preparing for the Olympics in Tokyo, Japan from July 23 to August 8.

Itumeleng Khune (Bafana Bafana) and Akumu Agay (Kenya) are the other Amakhosi players who are away on international duty, hoping to feature in the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers for their respective nations.

“It’s fulfilling that we still have players on international duty even though we’ve not been doing well. It shows that there’s something positive at the club, even though the results haven’t been forthcoming. This is a sign that we’re heading in the right direction,’’ said Ngcobo.

Chiefs may be struggling this season, with just 23 points from 19 outings, but the 21-year-old Ngcobo has been one of the club’s few eager beavers amid the uninspiring form. The promising star relishes his current purple patch, admitting playing for a club of Amakhosi’s magnitude comes with added pressure.

“Playing for a team like Chiefs comes with a lot of pressure. But for my career, I think I must just enjoy this moment and make sure I contribute more to the team’s ambitions,’’ said Ngcobo.

“Mshini” as Ngcobo is affectionately known to his peers, also underlined the importance of grabbing the opportunity the club has given him with both hands, especially as a budding star.

“What’s important is to make sure you don’t misuse the opportunities you get because there are a lot of people who can kill for that opportunity. As young as I am, I know that I must always give my best,’’ Ngcobo emphasised.

After missing the 2017 U-20 World Cup in  South Korea due to a long-term Achilles injury, Ngcobo is eager to make the final U-23 squad to represent Mzansi at the Olympics.

“It was hurting to miss the U-20 World Cup, but it’s all in the past now. My aim is to go to the Olympics and represent my country there. I will work very hard to achieve my Olympic dream,’’ Mshini noted.

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