AFTER trying for the play offs for a fourth consecutive time, Coach Joel Masutha’s return to Black Leopards FC secured the team the last seat in the big boys club again. Masutha re-joined Lidoda Duvha late last year from
neighbours, Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila.
The move has helped land the team in the National First Division (NFD) play-offs and now back in the Premier Soccer League (PSL). He says that he has never been more ready for PSL and cannot wait to give his opponents a run for their money, especially during home games.
He added that the team’s support base was their trump card and the team could not afford to play well without them.
“Our supporters make things very difficult for opponents as you saw in the last match against Jomo Cosmos, they packed the stadium to the rafters. And that will be our secret weapon the PSL,” said Masutha.
Speaking to African Times Masutha said his chemistry with the players was the reason for their reunion. Leopards have clawed their way back into PSL contention after finding themselves at the wrong end of the table in the first half of the season. The Leopard’s turning point was when they beat Durban based Real Kings back in March.
However, Masutha confesses that it was not a peaceful stroll on the pitch.
“Uthongathi FC was difficult to break. We respected Witbank Spurs, Cape Town all stars and league winner Highlands Park. All these teams gave us a tough time” he said.
“The victory against Real Kings changed our fortunes in the league last season. You do not go to King Goodwill Zwelithini stadium and come back alive. But we did it. We did not just win, we also played well which boosted players’ confidence. “We had confidence that we will gain promotion this time. If you listen to all my interviews I was consistent that we will get into the play-offs and win them. I believe in my boys,” he said.
Leopards join two other Limpopo based sides in the PSL Polokwane City and Baroka FC to make it a total of three teams from the province.
“It is good for the province that we have three teams in the PSL. Gauteng has more than that so it should not be a
surprise,” said the young mentor.
When asked what strategy he was going to follow in the PSL he said that they were looking into re-enforcing the team.