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Wits, Downs Nedbank Cup semis clash a headache for both coaches

AS THEY prepare to resume their 2019/20 Premier Soccer League (PSL) campaign, Bidvest Wits have been dealt a massive blow with striker Mxolisi Macuphu surviving a hijacking.

Wits, Downs Nedbank Cup semis clash a headache for both coaches

According to coach Gavin Hunt, the former SuperSport United hitman has lost his car and the veteran manager admits his player has a problem.

Hunt also confirmed that some of his players tested positive for Covid-19 and that midfielder Thabang Monare is struggling with injury whilst they will miss Elias Pelembe, who is in lockdown in Mozambique.

The current season was halted because of the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic in March and the Clever Boys are preparing to face Mamelodi Sundowns in the Nedbank Cup semi-final match this weekend at Orlando Stadium.

“Machupu got hijacked this week so I don’t know. They stole his car, everything so he has got a problem,” said Hunt told the media.

“Thabang Monare is struggling a little bit, Gift [Motupa] is struggling a little bit. So, yeah if you go through the team. Pelembe has not come back, who else?

“You obviously got players who tested positive two weeks ago and they have just come back this week. It’s quite a few of them.” 

The Cape Town-born coach also explained he will have to hand debuts to a number of his players from their MultiChoice Diski Challenge team, saying they are facing a tough week.

“This first week is tough for us, we play Sundowns, [Kaizer] Chiefs and [Orlando] Pirates in seven days,” added Hunt.

“There are going to be a lot of players that will make their debuts, that’s for sure, which possibly wouldn’t have happened in a normal season.

“Football is a funny game, hopefully, starting Saturday, which won’t be easy for both sides, let’s see how we go.”

On the other hand, the Wits manager also faces a bleak future as the National First Division (NFD) side, Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila (TTM) announced they cannot afford the former defender’s salary.

“I have been in South Africa football since 1981 and I’ve never missed a year. I am trying to be as calm as I can. I am trying to be as calm as I can,” continued the four-time PSL title-winning coach

“It is very unique, but we will get on with it and play football, let’s see where it takes us. Personally, I want to feel the grass under my feet and go to training every day. I want to keep working immediately after this season.”

Meanwhile, Downs also have their own problems, reports Mdu Mphahlele.

According to headcoach Pitso “Jingles” Mosimane, he has injuries and those that are under medical review aren’t ready to take the field.

‘Keeper Dennis Onyango, together with Venezuelan forward Jose Ali Meza and Brazilian defender Ricardo Nascimento, are injured.

“We have Ali Meza injured, the next two days will give us a chance to see if he is available. Dennis has a niggling injury also,” Mosimane told SuperSport.com.

Mosimane also confirmed that defender Anele Ngcongca is not training and will miss Saturday’s match, together with Keletso Makgalwa and forward Mauricio Affonso, who is still recovering while in his home country Uruguay.

Thapelo Morena is now involved in full training but Mosimane says he does not want to risk the utility player by rushing him back to action.

At the same venue Bloemfontein Celtic’s will face Baroka at 2pm.

Image (Is it this way or…Wits coach Gavin Hunt is a worried man ahead of Downs clash in the Nedbank Cup semis on Saturday at Orlando Stadium).

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