Marques keen to hit the ground running at TTM
New coach faces tough hurdle at Hungry Lions
Newly appointed Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila (TTM) coach Zeca Marques is eager to hit the ground running when they face GladAfrica Championship log leaders Hungry Lions at Thohoyandou Stadium on Sunday.
Marques, who has been without a job for three years, joined TTM on a two-year deal yesterday and will be assisted by Mulondo Sikhwivhilu.
“I will assess the team when I get down there and tomorrow [today], we will start preparing for the weekend game against Hungry Lions and it will give me an indication of how far we are,” Marques told Sowetan yesterday.
“You have to hit the ground running. It is good sometimes to play these teams who are up there. It sets the tone and also shows what the team is capable of. It tests the character of the squad, so I think this is for me is a resilience test to see where we are as a team. Can we stand up to these challenges? I would rather play a team like that, that will bring the best out of us.”
The 60-year-old also explained what inspired him to join TTM, who experienced difficulties in previous years both in the GladAfrica Championship and DStv Premiership.
“I’m excited because I had a great chat with the president [Masala Mulaudzi] and he shared his vision with the club and shared his vision for the community,” Marques said. “What he would like to do with the community in Venda. And that excited me because it wasn’t just football that I was going there for, it was to work with the community and bring some excitement back into the community.
“Looking at the development of what we can do and how we can promote the youngsters in the area. So it was a good approach and that’s why when I looked into it, I said, 'I'm going there not just for football but to make a difference in the community and that’s why I’m excited'.”
Marques said he was not given mandates, but he aims to qualify the team to the Premiership next season. “The mandates are like all the coaches, go out there and win. If the results don’t come, we will have to part ways. That's football.
“So the mandate is let’s get into the playoffs. Let’s try to win the promotion. I don't need anyone to give me a mandate for that because that’s what drives us.”
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