Lech­esa hop­ing for a turn in for­tunes for Beasts

NFD fix­tures

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - SPORT - MIKE DE BRUYN

FC CAPE TOWN coach Dun­can Lech­esa is fully aware of the chal­lenges that lie ahead and has made it his mis­sion state­ment to turn things around.

His first ob­sta­cle is a trip to East Lon­don to take on Black­burn Rovers in a First Divi­sion match at the Gel­van­dale Sta­dium. Lech­esa, a for­mer PSL player, will need all his wits about him.

The self- pro­claimed “African Beasts” have been rooted to the foot of the ta­ble since the open­ing round and are now in dan­ger of be­ing one of the two teams rel­e­gated come the end of the sea­son.

Lech­esa brings a wealth of ex­pe­ri­ence, hav­ing pre­vi­ously coached at Carara Kicks, United FC, and Polok­wane City, whom he guided to pro­mo­tion To­day: Black­burn Rovers v FC Cape Town; Vasco Da Gama v Mi­lano United (Parow Park, 3.30pm); Ma­luti FET Col­lege v Chippa United; Sivutsa Stars v Leop­ards To­mor­row: Thanda Royal Zulu v United FC; Wit­bank Spurs v Roses United; Baroka FC v African War­riors from the NFD to the PSL last sea­son.

Town, who con­tinue to train at the NNK Rugby Sta­dium, but have switched play­ing venue to Parow Park, have yet to record a win this sea­son, and with just three points from eight games, sit last on the 16- team stand­ings.

Hav­ing re­placed Vladislav Heric, Lech­esa will be keen to get his first win un­der his belt at the third at­tempt, hav­ing be­gun his ten­ure with a draw against Wit­bank Spurs be­fore be­ing beaten 2-0 by San­tos.

“The chal­lenge ahead is twofold: lift the boys’ heads and spir­its and move out of the drop zone,” said Lech­sesa.

“Max­i­mum effort and loads of self-be­lief will get us point­ing in the right di­rec­tion. Be­ing back in Cape Town for the sec­ond time and get­ting the op­por­tu­nity to coach a promis­ing squad is a thrill and I fore­see a brighter fu­ture. It’s go­ing to be tough.”

He is spot-on: this is a side with weak­nesses in all ar­eas of play, es­pe­cially in de­fence, with goals be­ing con­ceded at an alarm­ing rate.

“It’s a new team, with a new coach; we still have to adapt,” Lech­sesa added. “Af­ter three or four games I will have a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of where we stand and what ac­tions may need to be taken. But I do be­lieve we are go­ing to start mov­ing up the log.”

Rovers will no doubt feel they’ve got a good chance of tak­ing the points on of­fer. They come into this clash hav­ing lost only two of eight games to date.

In other NFD matches in­volv­ing Cape teams to­day, sixth-placed Vasco da Gama lock horns with top- placed Mi­lano United at Parow Park while sec­ond- placed Chippa United take on league rook­ies Ma­luti FET Col­lege at the Charles Mopeli Sta­dium.

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