Nyatama should have cracked the nod in the Footballer of the Season award

23 May 2018 - 15:04 By Sazi Hadebe
Lamontville Golden Arrows head coach Clinton Larsen says Orlando Pirates midfielder Musa Nyatama (pictured) deserves to win Absa Premiership midfielder of the season award.
Lamontville Golden Arrows head coach Clinton Larsen says Orlando Pirates midfielder Musa Nyatama (pictured) deserves to win Absa Premiership midfielder of the season award.
Image: Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

Golden Arrows coach Clinton Larsen and Orlando Pirates assistant mentor Rulani Mokwena have gone against popular opinion and insisted that Musa Nyatama should have made the final shortlist of the Footballer of the Season award.

The Premier Soccer League named the Mamelodi Sundowns duo of Percy Tau and Hlompho Kekana‚ and Maritzburg United utility player Siphesihle Ndlovu as the three nominees for the accolade this week but according to Larsen and Mokwena‚ Pirates midfielder Nyatama should have also been on the list.

“I think this is the best I’ve seen Musa Nyatama playing‚” said Larsen.

“When I had him at Bloem Celtic‚ I never saw him scoring a goal with his head but suddenly he’s scoring with his head.

“I don’t know what coach Rulani and Micho (Milutin Sredojevic) did to him but he’s chipped in with some important goals this season.

“I just think the role he plays within his team (Pirates)... … that deep lying midfield position‚ he excelled in that role and has been the heartbeat of his team.

“I was very impressed with the season that Nyatama had. For me‚ Percy Tau and Musa Nyatama are the two players that gave standout performances throughout the season.”

Mokwena mentioning a number of players from his team Pirates that he thought also deserved some mentioning.

“I’ve been surprised that some of our players have never been mentioned in the mix‚” said Mokwena.

“Without trying to sound like a cheerleader‚ but I think some of our players also deserve to be in and around the mix. Not to say that they deserve to win the awards.

“Players like Musa Nyatama have been an exception and Innocent Maela has been an exception.

“We’ve seen him (Maela) contributing to about 65% as a left full back to the goals we have scored this season.

“But if you’re too much of a sportsman and without bringing any form of alliance‚ you probably should be giving it to Percy Tau.”

It should console Mokwena‚ however‚ that both Maela and Nyatama are nominees in the Defender of the Season and Midfielder of the Season categories‚ respectively.

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