Mamelodi-born Sundowns star George Lebese admits he will be under pressure next season
Mamelodi Sundowns midfielder George Lebese has admitted that the coming Premier Soccer League (PSL) season will be make or break for him and there will be no room for failure.
Lebese went through an underwhelming first season at Chloorkop after a highly publicised move from rivals Kaizer Chiefs and he only made fifteen appearances in all competitions‚ scoring two goals.
But after a good pre-season that also saw him lose a lot of weight‚ he is ready to restart his once promising career.
“I am ready and fit for the coming season‚" he said on Wednesday as the Brazilians prepared for the Caf Champions League group stage visit by AS Togo Port on Friday night at Lucas Moripe Stadium in Atteridgeville.
"I have lost about six kilograms and I am waiting for my chance.”
Lebese admitted that he has taken a while to get used to his surroundings and to understand coach Pitso Mosimane's methods.
“Nothing went wrong last season‚" he said.
"I just needed time to understand what the coach wanted from me.
"It was a learning season but there will be no excuses in the coming season because I know what the coach wants.
"I spoke to the coach on a regular basis last season.
"He gave me feedback so that I know where I needed to improve and I am just waiting for my chance.
“Last season when we won the league‚ my contribution was not as I would have liked. But some of us who did not play much pushed the guys who played.
"I did what was required of me to do and still have more to offer next season.
"The coach has said that there are spaces open and no one is guaranteed to play.
"It is up to us as players to take those opportunities.”
Sundowns remain rooted to the bottom of the group standings on two points from three matches and they will be under a lot of pressure when they welcome AS Togo Port to Pretoria on Friday
Mosimane's charges have to beat the visitors and Lebese remains hopeful that they have got what it takes to get themselves out of the hole they have dug for themselves.
“We put ourselves in this situation and we have to win our remaining games‚" he said.
"There is pressure in the Champions League and the club is expected to reach at least the semis or the final.
"With the kind of quality that we have here‚ we can’t settle for (just reaching) the group stages.
"It is disappointing to find ourselves in this situation and we have to get ourselves out of this.
"The coach is disappointed with the results and we have ourselves to blame. But we are mentally prepared.”