CAPE TOWN - Ajax Cape Town coach Muhsin Ertugral has so much respect and admiration for Kaizer Chiefs caretaker-coach Patrick Mabedi that he has changed his game plan as the two teams prepare to meet in the final PSL fixture of the season at the Cape Town Stadium on Saturday.
Ertugral is a former Chiefs coach and, during his spells there, central defender Mabedi played an influential role in the success of his Amakhosi teams. Now, with the 44-year-old Malawian in temporary charge of the Soweto club, Ertugral admits he has to approach things a little differently.
“As a player, I loved Patrick (Mabedi, Chiefs coach),” said Ertugral. “With the success I had at Chiefs, Patrick was always the cornerstone of my team.
“He was an explosive player; you could dribble past him, but he would get back again. He was also tactically quite advanced, which is why I believe in his coaching abilities.
“You can see he has already changed the way Chiefs play, in that they now use a back four. He knows how to defend, and he knows how I think. And that is why I have changed the pattern that we will use against Chiefs on Saturday.”
“We’ve looked at the details of Chiefs, their organisation and the patterns they use since Patrick (Mabedi) came in. I’ve been there, and I know how dangerous they can be.
“They have players who are individually brilliant and they cannot be allowed time and space.
“But I also know the pressure they feel… I would like there to be a good crowd at Cape Town Stadium because it is the type of element that can distract them when they are under pressure.”