‘Shabba fever’ hits Erzurumspor as ex-Kaizer Chiefs star finds form in Turkey
Siphiwe Tshabalala is expected to again be in the starting lineup for his Turkish club BB Erzurumspor away at Bursaspor on Sunday after delivering a star-studded showing last week.
Tshabalala got his second start of the season and was central to the game as the newly-promoted side won for a second successive week and moved out of the relegation places.
The 1-0 win over Antalyaspor has the mountain city buzzing and Tshabalala confined to his apartment for most of the time as the locals have picked up the ‘Shabba fever’ (Tshabalala’s nickname) that Kaizer Chiefs fans used to suffer from.
“It’s crazier here than back home‚” joked Tshabalala after being continuously mobbed in the streets over the last few days.
“This Sunday’s game is going to be a lot tougher. Bursaspor are difficult to beat at home.”
But Tshabalala’s club are just two points behind Bursaspor in the Super Liga standings.
Erzurumspor are in their first season in the top-flight having been down in the fourth tier of Turkish football just eight years ago.
The ambitious club have players from nine different countries in their squad as Tshabalala makes a remarkable first foray into European football at the age of 34.
The city is better known as a ski resort and is bitterly cold at the moment at an average of just a few degrees centigrade.
“It’s not too bad as I spend most of my time inside but the locals tell me it gets a lot worse‚” Tshabalala added.