Trott eyes big season with new squad

2008-07-31 00:00

JOHANNESBURG — Mamelodi Sundowns head coach Trott Moloto said fans will see a “re-launched” Brazilians in Saturday’s Telkom Charity Cup at the Mmabatho Stadium.

The Brazilians face Kaizer Chiefs in the second semi-final at noon, after Orlando Pirates meet Platinum Stars at 10 am.

Moloto is brimming with confidence after bringing in 11 new players, many of whom will make their debuts against Amakhosi.

But he said he is not in the least bit worried about rumours that new technical director Ted Dumitru may interfere.

Moloto pointed out that both of them were former Bafana Bafana coaches and worked professionally. He is happy to work with and report to Dumitru, he said.

“Things are done collectively. I respect Ted and enjoy working with him. There is no fear that there will be any conflict. We both have the same goal and that is to help put Sundowns back on top and win the Absa Premiership.”

Moloto was also frank about overweight striker Collins Mbesuma, who is training with the squad.

The former Chiefs and Zambian star has not been signed.

Said the Downs coach: “Mbesuma is training with us at present. I want to address his fitness level. He is under a special programme. But I have not made a decision on whether to sign him or not. Of concern is the fact he struggled in Europe and is not a regular for Zambia. But we will wait and see. I am not in a hurry.”

Downs have signed top strikers like Sibusiso Zuma, Thando Mngomeni, Mozambican Dario Monterio and Katlego Mphela. They will all make their debuts in the Charity Cup. With so much competition at the club, Mbesuma will have to prove his fitness and show that he still has the killer instinct he showed at Chiefs in 2005 before he wins a contract.

Although the Charity Cup rules allow teams to field guest players, it is unlikely Moloto will risk fielding Mbesuma against his former club.

Said Moloto: “The Charity Cup is a big test for us. It will give me a true reflection as to where we stand in our readiness for the new season and to iron out any problems that might crop up before the season officially starts.”

Moloto said the game against Chiefs is the ideal opportunity to integrate his new players. He was forced to field his old squad in the two matches against Egypt’s Harras al-Hodoud in the third round of the African Confederations Cup. Downs lost 2-1 on aggregate.

He added that playing a team that had played against Manchester United and Pirates in last week’s Vodacom Challenge will be ideal.

— Sapa.

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