Giovanni Solinas issues a warning to Kaizer Chiefs' PSL rivals
Coach Giovanni Solinas has warned the club’s Premier Soccer League rivals that the best of Kaizer Chiefs is still to come and believes the addition of Lebo Manyama will make for a fearsome attacking unit at Naturena.
Manyama debuted on Saturday as Chiefs brushed aside Cape Town City 4-1‚ with the Bafana Bafana attacking midfielder playing 77 minutes.
Solinas admits that the 28-year-old is not yet fully fit and that when he is‚ his combination with the likes of Khama Billiat‚ Leonardo Castro and the pacey Dumisani Zuma will make Chiefs a potent attacking force.
“The problem with Lebo is his fitness‚ he has arrived at Kaizer Chiefs with no pre-season.
"He has been working with the fitness coach to get the fitness up. Lebo is a top player‚ he is a player who can help us score more goals‚” Solinas said.
“In my opinion he is still not 100 percent fit‚ but when it is top‚ Lebo is an unbelievable player. This is a player for Bafana Bafana‚ he is a top-scorer.”
Chiefs also had Madagascan Dax on the bench and with the offensive-minded George Maluleka returning from injury‚ the Italian coach will shortly be spoiled for choice.
“Now we have good players [coming in] like Lebo Manyama‚ Dax‚ George Maluleka‚ Mario Booysen … so now is coming the real Kaizer Chiefs‚” he said.
Saturday’s win was a first league success for Solinas since taking over and is followed quickly by a visit to Free State Stars on Tuesday.
He says the players need to “stay humble” and continue to make the improvements to their play that have been evident in recent matches.
“We need the balance‚ not only on the field‚ but also mentality. When things have gone wrong for us‚ we need to keep strong. We need to keep believing in our job‚" the Italian said.
“When the victory comes‚ the success‚ you stay humble and this is the right mentality. Today I am happy for the boys‚ but we need to stay with our feet on the ground.”
Some 35‚000 fans came to the Cape Town Stadium for the game that was played in an electric atmosphere and ended in party mode with Chiefs’ success.
Solinas said that the influence of positive support for the team had been important‚ perhaps suggesting that it has been lacking at other matches this campaign.
“I am very happy because our fans deserve this victory‚" he said.
"Today our fans made the difference‚ they supported us‚ they supported the boys and the players played well because they felt [the backing of] the supporters.”