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Swallows players have benefited from Compact Cup, says Dylan Kerr

Ruzaigh Gamildien of Warriors celebrates his 2nd goal and winning goal during the 2022 DStv Compact Cup Final between Coastal United and Warriors at FNB Stadium in Johannesburg on 29 January 2022 ©Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

Ruzaigh Gamildien of Warriors celebrates his 2nd goal and winning goal during the 2022 DStv Compact Cup Final between Coastal United and Warriors at FNB Stadium in Johannesburg on 29 January 2022 ©Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

Published Jan 30, 2022

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Durban - Warriors coach Dylan Kerr said that the DSTV Compact Cup final which his side won against Coastal United FC in Johannesburg on Saturday was a “cautious” game.

With the second half of the season in close proximity, many players would have been more concerned about preventing injury than winning the newly formed tournament.

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“The game was a bit (cautious). When we conceded, we reacted well to get a quality equalizer within five minutes. The game itself did not free flow as much as we expected. The substitutions are very difficult. The youth players did well from all four clubs. I thought that they did themselves proud. Working with senior players improves them immensely,” said Kerr.

The trophy is a second one in two years for Kerr. He famously also led former club Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila (TTM) to the Nedbank Cup last season. Now, the Malta-born tactician's mandate will be to help new club Swallows avoid relegation.

The Dube Birds are currently in 14th spot in the Premiership and just one point clear of the drop zone. Kerr can certainly take confidence from the form of striker Ruzaigh Gamildien in the Compact Cup as it was the Swallows star's brace in the final which led to Warriors lifting the title. If the 32-year-old can deliver similar performances for Swallows, the Soweto based club will have a good chance of avoiding the drop.

“The league is very tough. Gamildien has not been in form for Swallows this season but on Thursday, we did a drill which epitomized the first goal. Had we not done that, Gamildien would have not scored the first goal," said Kerr.

Based on the performances of Swallows players in the Compact Cup, Kerr remains confident that the club can turn around their fortunes in the second half of the season.

“I came to the club when it was at the bottom of the league. We had six games within 17 days and I did not know the finer details of the squad with little time to prepare. In the six games, we made mistakes but on the positive aspect, we have been outstanding. We took the team out of the relegation zone and changed the dynamics. We found out what issues players have. The plan from Monday will be to prepare for the Nedbank Cup game against TS Sporting. It should be a humdinger of a Cup game,” said Kerr.

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