Moroka Swallows captain on Igesund, 250 matches and the coming season

2014-07-27 08:45

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After struggling for the better part of last season and ending up in the 13th spot, Moroka Swallows captain Lefa Tsutsulupa is optimistic about the season ahead.

You played under Gordon Igesund at club level. Were you shocked when his Bafana Bafana contract wasn’t renewed? Was he given a fair chance?

I was not shocked that he was sacked. His contract was up and we don’t know his performance clauses so he probably did not meet them. He is a top quality coach though so I have no doubt he will bounce back stronger.

Last season was a tough one for the Birds. What can fans expect from the team in the new season – will you fly in 2014/15?

We need to improve the intake of players coming to the club and improve the organisation, but I hope for a good season that’s better than 2013-2014.

Any new faces the fans can look forward to seeing on the pitch?

Yes. There are a few players on trial who look impressive. I am sure they will add value to the team’s performance. Time will tell.

What are your personal goals for the new season?

I need to have an injury free season, the last campaign was interrupted by injuries and I lost the momentum while I was out. I hope this season is better and I need to score more goals to alleviate the pressure on the strikers.

You are 34 now. How many more seasons do you have in your legs and what inspires you to keep playing?

I honestly don’t know. For as long I can keep up with the demands of the game I will keep going. The day I start lagging behind, I will stop.

You are a Swallows legend, having donned the club jersey in over 250 matches. It must be in your blood, so do you hope to become part of the club structures once you are ready to retire?

Yes, I know I can contribute to Moroka Swallows and improve the structures, but nothing is guaranteed in football. I have been doing a lot to prepare myself beyond the playing days, so when that day comes I will be ready for the next challenge.

Are you involved in any football development projects or the club’s academy?

Yes I am, my brother and I own a football club, which assists young players with training and preparations for greener pastures. As we speak I have young guys at the Bloemfontein Celtic development team who have impressed there. I will be the happiest man if they get to play in the PSL one day.

What are your thoughts on the status of football development in South Africa and what do you feel needs to be done to make the national team more competitive on a global level?

We need to establish national academies so talented players can get proper training. The level of youth coaching also needs to be improved so our young players’ talents can be in the right hands.

» Copy supplied by Puma.

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