JOHANNESBURG – Thobani Mncwango is not a cry baby who questions the coach about his lack of game time but he’s aware that sentiment might force him out of Bidvest Wits during the January transfer window.
After being released by Polokwane City in January to join the Clever Boys, a lot was expected from Mncwango, but so far the striker has hit rock bottom as he’s only made five appearances in 12 months - without scoring a single goal.
Also, while Wits are currently summit of the PSL standings due to their potent attack - which includes Simon Murray, Gift Motupa, Mxolisi Macuphu, Lehlohonolo Majoro and Gabadinho Mhango - the 31-year-old striker has found himself demoted to the reserves.
However, far from sulking, Mncwango believes coach Gavin Hunt knows what he’s doing.
“I talk to the coaches but I don’t want to go deep about my situation with the first team and Gavin,” Mncwango said.
“He (Hunt) knows what he needs and you can’t blame him (for not playing me). The current team is doing well and I am proud of them. My main aim is to remain focused because I don’t know when my chance will come, but I'll be ready. I know myself and where I want to go.”
If Wits are serious about reclaiming the PSL title from Mamelodi Sundowns, Hunt won’t fix something that’s not broken but he’ll possibly strengthen the team. By then, Mncwango could have further fallen down the pecking order, or even had his contract terminated.
“I have a nice relationship with (chief executive) Jose (Ferreira), he understands me,” Mncwango explained.
“I think that if an opportunity of a loan deal or a permanent move to another team comes (they’ll allow me to leave). I think he wants to see me progress in life, and he’s unhappy that I am not playing. There are possible suitors that we are talking to but we are waiting for the window.”
Mncwango might have kept those suitors under the radar so far, but he reminisces about his tenure with former side Rise and Shine. After all, his time there gave him his first Bafana Bafana call-up after being runner-up for the league’s top goal-scorer award with 13 goals during the 2015/16 season.
“It’s a team that will always hold a special place in my heart because Wits and the national team saw me through them,” he said.
Wits close off their first half of the season tomorrow night at home against Chippa United.@Mihlalibaleka