DURBAN - Professional football will be enjoyed in Port Shepstone this season as First Division side Real Kings plan to host matches on the South Coast.
The 2017/8 season will also see NFD action on the North Coast following the promotion of uThongathi FC, although the rookies’ home base at the Shaik Mohideen Stadium is yet to be confirmed.
The venue needed to be approved by the PSL for the higher level of football. In its previous guise as Watson Park the stadium was home to Tongaat Crusaders before the PSL era.
With AmaZulu’s NFD status purchased by the former Thanda Royal Zulu administrator, Jomo Biyela, and renamed Richards Bay FC, the town continues to host professional matches. The fourth second-tier team in the province is Pietermaritzburg-based Royal Eagles.
Kings’ decision to take some matches to Port Shepstone follows better planning and organisation by the club which last term debuted in the First Division. Better preparation for the second season means they will hope to challenge for promotion, said Kings coach Simo Dladla.
“This is a promotion league and we’re no different to other teams who want to play in the PSL. Our focus will be on winning in every game so that we can get promoted,” said Dladla.
“This time our organisation off the field will be improved in terms of the logistics like traveling, camping and training, and that should show on the field, because if something is not done right on the outside then it affects the play.”
Kings finished 11th last season, dodging a relegation battle. With players now familiar with the league, and the squad bolstered with experienced players in goalkeeper Ricardo Goss (Golden Arrows), striker Muzikayafane Ngidi (Polokwane City), midfielder Kyle Davies (University of Pretoria) and Gabonese defender Stevy Nzambe (AmaZulu), Dladla reckons it’s a matter of players getting used to each other for them to become a formidable team.
Dladla is close to finalising a three-year deal with Kings.