Steve Komphela is working towards restoring the golden days of Lamontville Golden Arrows when the team was famous for playing passing football mixed with brilliant individual skills. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
Steve Komphela is working towards restoring the golden days of Lamontville Golden Arrows when the team was famous for playing passing football mixed with brilliant individual skills.

It’s been a year since Komphela took over the coaching reins from Clinton Larsen at Abafana Bes’thende and he now feels it’s time to exert himself and create a legacy through bringing back the club’s reputation of playing “carpet football” and unearthing young talent.

Over the years Abafana Bes’thende have turned raw talent into stars. The likes of Mabhudi Khenyeza, Papi Zothwane, Siyabonga Sangweni and the late Richard Henyekane are prime examples.

Komphela believes that this is what made Arrows one of the most respected clubs in South Africa.

“We want to bring back the culture of Abafana Bes’thende. But you can’t do that with the stress of the results. We want them to get into a stage where they are matured mentally and they can compete without any fear because they trust the process. There are games where we lost and I said had we had the mentality and the belief, we would have won them. Against Maritzburg United with two minutes to go we went from 1-0 up to lose 2-1.

“We had no reason to lose to Highlands Park. Against Bidvest Wits, we had a penalty (to equalise) but we missed it and lost the game. Against Black Leopards, there was only one team on the pitch but we lost,” Komphela articulated after beating Baroka FC on Wednesday at Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium in Clermont.

Arrows are a team under construction under the tenure of Komphela. They have some exciting young talent in the likes of Ntsako Makhubela, Lindokuhle Mtshali, Nduduzo Sibiya and Sibusiso Sibeko.

“The profile of a team that concedes two goals in two minutes and consistently so, it points to a lack of mental strength. We are building on that. By the time, they get strong mentally, you would have been fired and somebody coming in next year will benefit from your time. We only grow from setbacks. But who is suffering setbacks? When you suffer from setbacks, it is clearly indicated by the results. You are feeling it and they are growing. As soon as you go, someone else finds them grown but from your setbacks. People don’t see growth because there’s another type of growth that you can’t see using your eyes,” he added.

Abafana Bes’thende ended their barren run of four defeats on the trot on Wednesday as they brushed aside Baroka FC 1-0 in an Absa Premiership tussle.

“It was more of lessons than a relief. We are a ball playing team and sometimes we are too hard on ourselves. We want to play well even in conditions that are tough. A lesson we take from Baroka is that sometimes we need to fight. We need to find a way to fight. In terms of outcome, we are happy. We need to stay there so that we can play without stress,” Komphela explained.

Arrows have a date with Polokwane City next week Sunday in Polokwane.

“The gap between now and our next game will give us a breather especially at the back of the victory. These boys do get tired. We played over the weekend and then midweek. Football is about confidence,” Komphela stated.

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