Gordinho makes his presence felt at Chiefs

a star in the making ? Lorenzo Gordinho has seen a lot of game time this season PHOTO: Carl Fourie / Gallo Images
a star in the making ? Lorenzo Gordinho has seen a lot of game time this season PHOTO: Carl Fourie / Gallo Images

If Brazil boasts the likes of Ronaldinho, Robinho and Coutinho, South Africa may end up with the bragging rights of Gordinho.

The 21-year-old defender is fast entrenching himself in the hearts of Kaizer Chiefs supporters after back-to-back man of the match performances.

A fortnight ago, Lorenzo Gordinho’s goal helped Kaizer Chiefs beat Bidvest Wits and, last weekend, he produced another sterling performance against Mamelodi Sundowns.

But he is not getting carried away.

“I am not under any pressure because I have been working hard to raise my game. I never lost hope and knew my chance would come because I believe in and trust my ability. I just have to keep on working hard and continue with the momentum,” said Gordinho.

From being a benchwarmer under Stuart Baxter last season to a regular under Steve Komphela, Gordinho said he wanted to establish himself in the Chiefs team.

He has featured five times so far this season compared to the lone appearance he made in the last game of the soccer calendar against Chippa United, when the Absa Premiership title was already in the bag.

“I never lost sleep when I was not playing. All I did was to keep on working hard, and my hard work has paid off. I am in a happy space now.”

Gordinho knows his limitations and is working hard to improve his game.

The former Under-17 and Under-20 defender says the thought of going to the Rio Olympics in August has been a motivating factor for him so far.

“I really want to make the team, and I believe if I continue doing well I will stand a good chance of going there. But it is too early to talk about that now and my focus is on helping the team do well in the coming matches.”

He says he was inspired by his father, Manny Faria, who played for Orlando Pirates and Benoni United.

“He is the person I looked up to; he has been there for me and I want to surpass him. I want to win trophies for Chiefs.”

Gordinho says he has been getting guidance from senior players at the club and singled out Itumeleng Khune as a mentor.

“He gets a lot of attention and has managed to remain humble. He has spoken to me about how to conduct myself and I also believe that humility can bring success.”

With competition ever on the increase at Chiefs, particularly with the return of Morgan Gould and Daniel Cardoso from injury, Gordinho says he welcomes healthy rivalries.

He will be looking to retain his position in the team when they play Bloemfontein Celtic at the Free State Stadium this afternoon and when they host Platinum Stars at their home away from home, Cape Town Stadium, on Saturday.

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