Cape Town - Kaizer Chiefs coach Ernst Middendorp has called on the club’s fans to have patience with the likes of Khama Billiat and Leonardo Castro, who haven’t settled since their high-profile moves at the start of the season.
Chiefs have had an inconsistent season having let go of Giovanni Solinas at the mid-point of their campaign, and find themselves in sixth position, eight points behind league leaders Mamelodi Sundowns.
Middendorp believes Amakhosi will continue to improve over time as their new signings settle, much like Sundowns did under Pitso Mosimane’s tutelage.
"I found one quote from our valued colleague Pitso [Mosimane], he said it took him three years to find the Khama Billiat, Keagan Dolly [and Leonardo Castro combination],” Middendorp said as quoted by KickOff website.
"It’s not only Khama or Leonardo, who came in four or five months earlier; it’s Dax [Andrianarimanana], [Siphelele] Ntshangase and some other players that have also been lost in the near past.”
"Let’s take this into consideration a little bit, that everybody in the second year will probably do better and be happier with the pressure - it is like this.
"If you play a warm-up game, test game or even a game behind closed doors with Kaizer Chiefs, the pressure is high - you have to win each and every game, that’s the mentality that you come into and it takes a little bit of time.
"In particular for a lot of players that we’re possessing at the moment, guys coming in like Happy Mashiane - he will have his ups and downs and others, like Teenage Hadebe is only 23.
"We have to accept this, but we understand it’s not about building - I don’t talk this nonsense, we have to gain points, which is important for us, and with a good pre-season and preparation behind closed doors, we will go the right way."