'I hardly know some of the names of the boys‚' says Chippa coach Mapeza

23 October 2019 - 15:11 By Mark Gleeson
Chippa United players won their first match after eight attempts.
Chippa United players won their first match after eight attempts.
Image: Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images

Norman Mapeza marked his debut as Chippa United coach with a 1-0 win over Bloemfontein Celtic in the Telkom Knockout on Tuesday but said restoring confidence at the beleaguered Eastern Cape club would take some time.

“This was important for the players in terms of their confidence-building.

"They had played eight matches without a victory‚ so it’s a very important win for us‚” he told reporters after the first round triumph at Mdantsane.

“It was never going to be easy to motivate players after eight matches without a win.

"It’s like telling someone who has lost his parents that they need to move on with their life. That takes time.”

Ex-Zimbabwe coach Mapeza is the fourth man to take charge on the bench at Chippa this season and his reward for beating Celtic is a quarterfinal tie at home to Mamelodi Sundowns.

“We need to work extra hard because we are still in the woods; we are not out of the woods yet.

“Our main objective remains avoiding relegation. But that’s not taking anything away from this win. We needed this to boost the confidence for this boys

“This is my third week now so I cannot judge the performance‚ only the ones who have been here before (me) can judge.

“I hardly know some of the names of the boys so all I have been able to try and work on their self belief.

“But I’m happy with the performance although I do feel there are areas we need to work on‚” he added after Lehlogonolo Masalesa’s 79th minute goal ensured the win.

“In the last few minutes we couldn’t manage the game. But the bigger picture is we still need to work on our organisation‚ from the defence‚ midfield and going forward.

“Let’s keep working‚ let’s have discipline‚ let’s have determination‚ dedication‚” Mapeza said.