Absa Premiership

Dream debutants find net instantly

2018-01-28 06:03
Leonardo Castro

Johannesburg - There are only a few players who could not have introduced themselves to their new clubs better if they’d tried.

Some players have lived up to expectations and pleased their new clubs in the best possible way – by scoring on debut.

Last weekend, Leonardo Castro became the latest Premier Soccer League player to score in his maiden game for Kaizer Chiefs when he kicked the winner against Baroka FC.

The Colombian’s striker ensured Amakhosi’s maiden victory over the Limpopo side.

Castro was the third Chiefs player this season to find the back of the net in their first game.

Wiseman Meyiwa was the first to introduce himself to the Chiefs’ faithful in the best way possible when he scored against Cape Town City early in the season.

Then it was Siyabonga Ngezana’s turn. He was drafted into the game because of suspension and injuries to key defenders.

The young defender had a debut to savour when he got on the scoresheet against Mamelodi Sundowns.

New Ajax Cape Town striker Tendai Ndoro also found the back of the net in his first game in the Urban Warriors colours against Platinum Stars.

But the Zimbabwean was not the only one who made his name on the day – young Zama Rambuwane scored on the other side in his debut for Stars.

Soon after joining Chippa United from Jomo Cosmos, Linda Mntambo scored a brace to help the Chilli Boys earn three points against AmaZulu earlier this month.

This trend was started by Free State Stars’ Relebogile Mokhuoane early in the season when he scored against Bidvest Wits.

Veteran midfielder Teko Modise began his life at Cape Town City on a high note when he netted against Platinum Stars.

In the English Premier League, Alexandre Lacazette became the fifth player to score in his Arsenal debut, and Romelu Lukaku got his time with Manchester United off to a dream start by scoring a brace against West Ham early in the season.

Wayne Rooney also marked his return to Everton with a goal against Stoke City, and Egyptian striker Mohamed Salah scored for Liverpool against Watford.

Chiefs coach Steve Komphela sees this trend as a good but dangerous one. He said this as it is commendable for players to score on debut, it always puts them under pressure.

“Remember, they have already raised expectations and must try to live up to them,” said Komphela.

The Amakhosi coach reckons the first game is the easiest for new players.

“At no stage can a debutant be under pressure because, if things don’t go well, supporters will blame the coach and ask why the player was put in.

"If you score, credit will come to you, but the challenge is to keep up the same performance because you are as good as your last game,” Komphela said.

He said high expectations were the same thing as indirect pressure.

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Fixtures
Friday, 23 February 2018
Maritzburg United v Platinum Stars, Harry Gwala Stadium 20:00
Saturday, 24 February 2018
Baroka FC v Polokwane City, Peter Mokaba Stadium 15:30
Cape Town City FC v Wits, Athlone Stadium 18:00
Mamelodi Sundowns v SuperSport United, Lucas Moripe Stadium 18:00
Kaizer Chiefs v Bloemfontein Celtic, FNB Stadium 20:15
Free State Stars v AmaZulu FC, Goble Park 20:15
Sunday, 25 February 2018
Golden Arrows v Ajax Cape Town, Princess Magogo Stadium 15:15
Chippa United v Orlando Pirates, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium 15:30
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