JOHANNESBURG - Independent Media soccer writer Mohau Ramashidja has looked at Polokwane City and how they could fare in the Premiership this season.
Key player: Jabu Maluleke
He played a total of 31 games in all competitions last season, managing seven goals and eight assists in all of those matches. Maluleke has been very influential in that central midfield role and with age not on his side, the 35-year old is most likely to be driven to prove he’s sharper than ever each time he’s on the ball.
Coach: Bernard Molekwa
Impressed his bosses by ensuring the team finished in the top eight for the first time, after taking over from Luc Eymael. In 11 games in charge, Molekwa achieved five wins, two draws and four losses which convinced his employers that he can cope with the pressure of being in that coaching seat. That Molekwa will be able to cope with the similar type of pressure in the new season, we’ll have to wait and see.
Polokwane’s defence and attack has shown massive improvement in the three seasons they’ve been in the Premiership. The club conceded less goals, while pushing forward for their own up front. Last season was their best campaign ever, scoring 36 while conceding 34. Molekwa needs to ensure he continues to inspire his side to maintain balance in defence and attack.
It took guts from the club bosses to give Molekwa a chance to lead their side. Whether that will work in their favour on not, only time will tell. Should that plan backfire though, the club will be forced to make staff changes.
A finish within the top eight would be a plus. Repeating last season’s form would mean the club is evolving, and there’s also consistency within the team
Finishing outside the top eight would mean the team has dropped their performance. Molekwa does not want that in his conscious after been given the big responsibility of leading the team
Best season: 6th in 2017
Worst season: 15th in 2014
Goalkeepers: George Chigova, Harold Ndlovu, Pule Konopi. Defenders: Mogau Tshehla, Tshepo Tema, Ndivhuwo Ravhuhali, Walter Maponyane, Simphiwe Hlongwane, Thabiso Semenya, Thabang Klass, Carlington Nyadombo, Sibusiso Mbonani, Thapelo Tshilo, Mfundo Phungwayo. Midfielders: Wiseman Maluleke, Vusimusi Mngomezulu, Nazier Jacobs, Tshepo Matsemela, Salulani Phiri, Sammy Seabedi, Edgar Manaka, Jorry Matjila, Jabu Maluleka, Randi Ngobe, Bhekuthando Mema, Lorence Vilakazi. Strikers: Rendani Ndou, Thobani Mncwango, Puleng Tlolane, Rodney Ramagalela, Esau Kanyenda, Walter Musona.