THE FOCUS REMAINS
The remaining six matches in our league programme have ushered us into a straight and narrow, adrenalin infused battle that can only be survived through determination and an insatiable appetite for more glory and prestige.
With the race being open, the challenge rests more on individual athletes to espouse a sense of really wanting to lift the trophy or just surrendering because the final stretch is undeniably the most taxing one.
Upon seeing the tape at the end of the race, track athletes often draw on what is termed the “the runner’s kick”, an incredible flash or of energy that pushes the runner to outperform others and eventually chest the tape first. Used collectively in soccer, such a kick is the one that determines if the individual on the field has what it takes to inspire the self to achieve so that when that is translated into a team, it brings forth the ultimate team champions.
With eighteen points remaining to determine the ultimate kingship of the 2010/11 football season, I have no doubt that the straight and narrow track is taking its toll on everyone involved. It is for the player an opportunity for a history making medal whilst for the Technical Team a feather in their tactical planning and execution. It is for the administrator a sense of gratitude for guiding the company into another corporate achievement whilst supporters gain the right to boast as crowned champions that will take this pride into the incumbent season.
In our case thus far, the good start in the new year has suddenly taken a dramatic turn after four drawn matches that have obviously caused some grumbling in our close circles. These matches point to the fact that all teams are determined to fight to the finish and may therefore never be overwhelmed by the ambition of others. In truth, only the hungrier and more adrenalin injected athletes can lift the coveted trophy at the end of the season.
Our recent encounter against Free State Stars provided a perfect example of a hard fought battle when we grabbed a late equalizer in a match that we should have won given the number of chances we created. For a better part of the game, we pressured Stars but their solid defence and our failure to convert caused us a lot of consternation throughout the proceedings.
Undoubtedly the race is still on for the four teams in the leading pack and the difference in the margin points to the fact. Like I warned before, any team that slips into slumber will ruin its chances; an unwelcome fate in the last remaining six matches. Ajax, Supersport, Sundowns and a resurgent Wits University will stretch our resolve whilst the relegation battling Mpumalanga Aces, and unpredictable Amazulu can be more threatening to our cause if taken lightly.
Coupled with our desire to lift the NEDBANK Trophy, our sojourn in the last stages of this league race is certainly filled with a never-to-be-missed opportunity to prove our credibility as a force in South African football. Whilst this is the case, we have to deal with a lot of challenges including injuries to our key players, notably Musona, Ngcobo and Nale.
THE NEDBANK CHALLENGE
This weekend we engage Nathi Lions; an unknown host in the first round of the lucrative NEDBANK CHALLENGE. Going down to their stronghold of Umlazi obviously provides more challenges but a win is likely to lift our spirit right into our league programme.
Having dropped out of the competition by lower division teams in recent years, this time around we have concluded that we need to erase such and fight to compete in the finals. Admittedly, our encounter is unlikely to be an easy one as evidenced throughout the history of our participation in the competition. I believe our lads have done their homework and will not disappoint the thousands of supporters that will be rooting for them at the King Zwelithini Stadium on Sunday.
SHAREHOLDING AT KAIZER CHIEFS
I would like to dismiss as irresponsible and disrespectful all media allegation of sales of shares at Kaizer Chiefs. The fact they are written speculatively and also contain names of high-profiled friends that are equally baffled by such is indeed the lowest form of media treatment we have endured in our administration.
I am appalled and wish that some media can be considerate when spreading baseless and profit-infused stories that cause tremendous strain in our company particularly when the future of its employees, business partners and stakeholders is undressed in such a manner. This form of gutter reporting is by far the cheapest and can only point to the debilitating gluttony of media owners whose business it is to maintain an identity of “champion scoop hunters” that will stop at nothing to misinform their millions of gullible consumers.
By claiming to have “reliable sources” the hunters have clearly justified their sinister motives that have long bearing consequences to yet again bring our company into disrepute on a matter as sensitive as selling or attracting further investments into our business.
The false report has created an impression that we administer our business in an unprofessional manner that has neither plan nor consideration for the future sustainability of our enterprise. For that I am convinced that such is intended to maximise media sales at the expense of the truth that only we at Kaizer Chiefs know and understand. I wish to warn our supporters to remain calm and never be swayed into thinking that the Kaizer Chiefs that was built over many years of sacrifice is now suddenly placed under the potential hammer of media auctioneers.
These behind -the-desk traders have no consideration of the magnitude of damage they are causing our brand through their misinformed inkpads and pens.
May I therefore caution that such insensitivity have legal implications and may thus be treated with contempt it deserves. May I also abhor the practise of manufacturing stories by media that thrives on controversy.
I would like to thank all participants and friends that helped us lay to rest one of our founder members, Thomas Zero Johnson over the past weekend. I thank all speakers and members of the community and appreciate the presence of Dr. Irvin Khoza, the representatives of SA Soccer Legends and all structures. It was also humbling to share our grief with representatives from Botswana.
May I also express my heartfelt condolences to the families of Pro Molope who also played a part in the formation of Kaizer Chiefs for the loss of Eric Molope his younger brother. Pro Molope was the first coach at Kaizer Eleven and has remained a close friend over years. May the family and relatives be strengthened and find comfort in the grace of God during these trying times.
Kaizer Motaung (Mr.)