Tinkler explains the reasons behind City’s movements in the market during the off-season
Cape Town City aimed to bring necessary youth to an ageing squad with their signings‚ said coach Eric Tinkler.
Among City’s preseason acquisitions have been DR Congo international centre back Nathan Idumba Fasika, 22, from FC Saint Eloi Lupopo‚ right-back Patrick Fisher, 18, from Cape Town Spurs and forward Khanyisa Mayo, 22, from Richards Bay FC.
Tinkler said the stats from a preseason camp in Limpopo showed him that among his fittest players are some of his veterans. It is those players the coach will ask to steer the younger players as City aims to improve on last campaign’s seventh in the DStv Premiership.
“A very tall centre back‚ but technically gifted with good speed and aerial ability‚” Tinkler said of Fasika.
“Patrick Fisher is a right-back or right wingback. Young but with so much potential. He had a very good season with Cape Town Spurs last year in the NFD‚ and a fantastic player for the future.
“During our camp in Limpopo we also signed Khanyisa Mayo. So we’ve bolstered wing positions. He can play on the right and the left. Another young player.
“That’s what we’ve also been looking to do — bring on some young‚ talented players for the future.
“A lot of people are saying we are an ageing team‚ but I think we’re a healthy ageing team. If I look at Surprise Ralani‚ Mpho Makola and Thato Mokeke‚ all are extremely fit and top of the charts.”
After a short break of four weeks, City’s preseason started on July 5. Week one was for medicals and fitness assessments‚ Tinkler said.
In week two City started fitness loading “quite intensively”‚ and Fasika and Fisher arrived. In week three Justin Shonga arrived back from Cosafa Cup duty for Zambia‚ and Fagrie Lakay and Abbubaker Mobara returned from the SA Olympic team having been released for medical reasons.
“We started to most of the squad back just in time to go on the camp. The purpose was team building‚ focus on the game model‚ focus on the club culture‚ club objectives for the coming season nd bonding‚” Tinkler said.
“We also played three friendlies — against Venda Academy‚ Marumo Gallants and Mamelodi Sundowns.
“I was very happy with the whole trip‚ and what we focused on. I felt we achieved those objectives and that we’re moving in the right direction.
“We’ve moved into week four where we’ve upped the tempo. We’re still going to be playing a lot of friendlies from now until that first game against AmaZulu to prepare ourselves to the maximum.
“We want to start on a positive note and to do that we’ve got to be working extremely hard right now.”
City kick off their season in their MTN8 quarterfinal against last campaign’s league runners-up AmaZulu on the weekend of August 14-15.