Cape Town - SuperSport United coach Kaitano Tembo believes Samir
Nurkovic offers Kaizer Chiefs a different option with his aerial prowess and
causes defences problems.
Serbian striker Nurkovic, who joined Chiefs at the beginning
of July, grabbed his maiden Amakhosi goal in the 1-1 draw with Matsatsantsa at
FNB Stadium on Saturday.
The 27-year-old has started all three of Chiefs' matches
this season and has shown his quality with his vision, hold-up play, ability in
the air and eye for goal.
With Nurkovic in the side, the Glamour Boys are able to
change to a more direct style of play when needed and Tembo admitted that
Chiefs are a different proposition with him in the side.
"I think we struggled with the ball over the top. With
Nurkovic, a different type of player, strong in the air. He was winning
everything," said Tembo.
“We had a problem dealing with him. I think he’s a very good
striker and it was the first time our defence played against someone like that.
“He can hold the ball; he’s a good player technically as
well and he’s also got a football brain. He makes the right decisions and he
gave us a lot of problems.
“I think probably he could have grabbed a hat-trick if he
had [been more clinical]; I saw he had two one-on-ones. But, to be fair, I
think a draw was a fair result.”
Amakhosi mentor Ernst Middendorp echoed Tembo's sentiments
and believes that the Soweto giants have acquired a gem.
“Samir is definitely a player with the potential to create,
assist and his willingness is definitely there to score himself, but he has a
certain brain capacity to see the runs of players,” Middendorp added.
“But let’s be fair, he’s totally in a new environment,
coming from another continent and this is definitely something where, yes, I
need to take onto my own shoulders - I’m overloading him a little bit at the
moment because we need him.
“With Kearyn Baccus or James Kotei, I have a little bit of
time to get the capacity to become options of coming in, but with Samir,
currently, I have to think about what we’re doing on Tuesday.
“It’s very dangerous to load him in this way, I know it’s
risky but he’s a very professional player and he’s doing everything possible to
be prepared for the next game.”