Kaizer Chiefs coach Gavin Hunt has heaped praise on the match-winning duo of Nkosingiphile Ngcobo and Happy Mashiane, who come from the club’s academy.
The youngsters almost single-handedly won the past two games against Cape Town City and Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila (TTM).
At the weekend, against City, they both scored in Chiefs’ 2-1 league victory. They were at it again on Tuesday as they each scored in the 3-0 thrashing of TTM.
Lebogang Manyama netted the other goal.
“Good players can play with anybody and they [Ngcobo and Mashiane] can play with anybody,” Hunt said.
“We want to play into Samir [Nurkovic], but we can’t do that all the time. If I could get Ngcobo higher up the pitch I would, but we can’t because of other situations. Ngcobo does have the quality and he has three or four goals now. We need him in those good positions more often because he has ability.”
“Hopefully the combination can blossom going forward. Happy is my type of player. I liked him from the first day I saw him. He is able to whip in those crosses into the box.”
The club is perhaps preparing to get rid of some dead wood and will depend more on young players going forward.
Hunt admitted that he was looking towards the future.
“Any successful football team will have that transition between young and old. Sometimes we don’t get the balance right. In the derby I had too many youngsters, but we have to test them somewhere. We have to be careful how we do it and they have to learn very fast,” he said.
The win over TTM at FNB Stadium on Tuesday shot Chiefs to three wins on the trot and the positive result has boosted the team’s position on the DStv Premiership rankings.
Amakhosi are now at their highest position on the log this season – in seventh place with 16 points from 12 games.
It seems the players have caught a wake-up call, after giving Hunt the undesirable record of worst league start in recent history.
Just last week, after 10 games, Chiefs had accumulated a mere 10 points and were placed 14th on the log.
Chiefs will next face Stellenbosch in Cape Town on Saturday.