Bidvest Wits recently confirmed the signings of the experienced European-based duo of Steven Pienaar and Daylon Claasen.
Following the transfer of Pienaar, much has been said about the role he will play in a team which possesses some of the Premier Soccer League’s brightest talents and includes the young Phakamani Mahlambi.
Mahlambi is currently on trial in Portugal with an unnamed club, but Wits coach Gavin Hunt believes that if he fails to crack it, the immense experience of a player such as Pienaar, would do wonders for the 19-year-old’s development.
“You watch Daylon (Claasen)‚ you watch Steven (Pienaar) – you watch these guys train. It rubs off‚” Hunt told The Sowetan .
“And these players will run the dressing-room. They will make sure that these players are working hard, and that’s what I do. I’ve done it everywhere I’ve been. It’s important for a team. The coach mustn’t coach a team. The players must run the team,” Hunt added.
Meanwhile, Mahlambi was most recently awarded the PSL Young Player of the Season award, and Hunt maintains that winning such plaudits will not hurt his development.
“No, he’s a good‚ fun-loving boy. He needs a lot of guidance. He’s raw‚ but he’s got exciting‚ huge ability. And if you can harness that ability and get him in the right environment‚ his potential is endless. He didn’t play the first round of last season for us. It was a blow. He came in for the second round‚ started off good and then faded a bit. He’s a young boy man – he needs time,” Hunt concluded.