AmaZulu's good start partly down to their keepers‚ says Siyabonga Mbatha

13 October 2017 - 14:55 By Sports Reporter
Siyabonga Mbatha G/K of AmaZulu during the Absa Premiership 2017/18 game between AmaZulu and Platinum Stars at King Zwelithini Stadium, Durban on 23 September 2017.
Siyabonga Mbatha G/K of AmaZulu during the Absa Premiership 2017/18 game between AmaZulu and Platinum Stars at King Zwelithini Stadium, Durban on 23 September 2017.
Image: Steve Haag/BackpagePix

AmaZulu goalkeeper Siyabonga Mbatha says the club’s strong department between the posts is creating healthy competition at the new Premier Soccer League team.

Mbatha has played in Usuthu’s last two league games‚ their 3-0 home win against champions Bidvest Wits‚ which was followed by a 1-1 draw in Durban against Platinum Stars.

The 28-year-old goalkeeper has kept out AmaZulu’s loan signing from SuperSport‚ SA Under-23 international Boalefa Pule‚ and 35-year-old Usuthu keeping stalwart Energy Murambadoro‚ a Zimbabwe international.

Mbatha was one of the players AmaZulu inherited from Thanda Royal Zulu when Usuthu bought the franchise of their promoted Richards Bay neighbours as a route to the PSL in the pre-season.

The new side have started reasonably well‚ with two wins‚ two draws and two defeats from six matches to sit in ninth place.

Mbatha believes Usuthu’s strong goalkeeping department has helped them so far.

“It is not easy to compete with such talented and experienced goalkeepers. There is stiff competition for a place in the starting lineup‚ which is good for the team‚” he said.

“We also have a very goalkeeper coach in (Davies) Phiri‚ who has been helping us to improve.

“We are blessed with goalkeepers‚ who have international experience in Murambadoro and Pule.

“There is also Mpendulo Dlamini‚ who is a very promising goalkeeper. So‚ there is quality within our goalkeeping department.”

Mbatha‚ who made his Absa Premiership debut in 2011 for Bloemfontein Celtic‚ was instrumental in helping Thanda win the 2016-17 National First Division title for promotion.“I have also been around and I managed to gain some experience at Bloemfontein Celtic and Thanda in the NFD.

“So‚ I am well equipped to challenge for a place in the starting lineup.”

AmaZulu next take on Polokwane City at King Zwelithini Stadium on Wednesday.

- TimesLIVE

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