New Citizens coach upbeat about his Cape Town gig
CAPE TOWN – New Cape Town City coach Jan Olde Riekerink was impressed by Kermit Erasmus’s performance against Polokwane on Wednesday, describing him as “a dangerous player”.
Erasmus joins Bongi Ntuli and Peter Shalulile as the leading goal scorers in the Premiership after his brace took his tally to seven.
The Bafana Bafana marksman opened his team’s account, and after fellow striker Siphelele Mtembu doubled the advantage, bagged his next in effortless fashion. Rise and Shine found out the hard way that if you give the Citizens’ ace time and space in the score zone he’s going to cash in.
The victory for City ended a seven-game winless run in the competition and shifted them up two places to 11th on the standings on 11 points.
The club’s new head coach Olde Riekerink was in the stands and said: “What I want to see is talent, Kermit has that in abundance. He’s a dangerous player. For him to be at his most effective comes down to the way he receives the ball. If he gets it in between and behind the defence he’s going to be unstoppable.
“From what I saw in the first half he was played into goal-scoring positions and finished off well. But we weren’t like that in the second half, so we will work on these things and other areas of the game.”
His assistant Vasili Manousakis led the team into battle and was happy with his charges' performance but not too chuffed about conceding three goals, especially the last two in the final five minutes of the encounter watched by a few hundred loyal supporters.
“We played brilliantly for long periods but once again our last line of defence leaked goals,” he said. “I spoke with the players afterwards and they weren’t happy, they were disappointed and that’s pleasing, it shows the desire to buck up.
“That aside, the way the boys pulled together in the lead-up to and the day of the game was something to behold.
"Everything panned out perfectly. The guys wanted to give a big showing for former coach Benni McCarthy, did that, then they wanted to give the new coach something to smile about, achieved that too.
“For me, I’m just happy we got the win that has eluded us. Our past results did not do justice to how well we have been playing. But that’s now in the past and we all look forward to what lies ahead and working with Jan who brings a wealth of experience to the table,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Cape’s second PSL team, Stellenbosch FC, were brought down to earth as they saw their four-game unbeaten run ended in a 2-0 loss at fast-improving AmaZulu in another mid-week game.
Coach Steve Barker had warned his players to mark Ntuli out of the game - they didn’t and he pounced with both his side’s goals.
Mike de Bruyn