United aim to cause all sorts of problems for Wits

2015-02-09 00:00

THERE was a prominent school of thought at the beginning of the ­season that tipped Wits to be crowned PSL champions of 2014/15.

A lot of that had to do with coach Gavin Hunt moving into his second season at the club, while there was also much said about the financial muscle that the University club had at its disposal.

Either way, it appears that this will not be the year for Wits.

It will not be the year for anybody other than Kaizer Chiefs, who go ­into the resumption of the league a resounding 15 points ahead of Mamelodi Sundowns and Wits, who are in second and third respectively.

Maritzburg winger Mondli Cele, who has featured in all 17 matches that the Team of Choice have played this season, is still expecting a determined Hunt outfit to cause problems when the sides meet at Harry Gwala Stadium tomorrow night.

“We know that Wits is always a difficult game,” Cele told The Witness yesterday, recalling the 1-0 loss United suffered at Bidvest Stadium back in August.

“But we have been working very hard and we are up for the challenge.”

It has been a rollercoaster season for Cele, who went from playing third tier football in Port Shepstone to being named in the Bafana Bafana preliminary squad for Afcon 2015 in a little over six months.

Now that he has had a taste of the top, the 25-year-old winger is longing for more.

“Getting back into that Bafana squad is definitely a goal of mine and I want to work my way into Shakes Mashaba’s good books,” Cele said.

“I think that they [Bafana] did well at Afcon even though they didn’t win any games. The ­important thing is that we will learn from this and be better the next time we go to a major tournament.”

Turning his attention back to Maritzburg, Cele said he was well settled despite not being in a ­position to discuss his contract and a possible extension.

“I am very happy at the club and they have done everything that I have asked from them since I got here,” he said. “I work hard at ­training and I am always trying to get better, and I think that is why the coach [Steve Komphela] keeps choosing me.”

A poor end to 2014 saw Maritzburg take just two points from their last four matches — a run that has seen them slip to seventh on the log when a top-four place was looking more likely. Last week club chairperson Farouk Kadodia warned, quite bluntly, that only a top-eight finish would do this season.

But Cele is going one step further.

“We would like a top five,” he said. “We have the right group of players and that would make us happy.”

Tomorrow night’s clash against Wits kicks off at 7.30 pm.

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