Mamelodi Sundowns assistant coach Manqoba Mngqithi has urged out-of-favour attacker George Lebese to work even harder in order to win his place back in the team.
Since joining Masandawana from Kaizer Chiefs last season, Lebese has failed to rediscover his best form and has fallen down the pecking order especially with the club having brought on board several new faces in the off-season.
Lebese is yet to make a single appearance this season and most recently did not feature as Sundowns lifted the Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi Legacy Cup, which has only fueled speculation regarding his future at the club.
“Believe me, it is very difficult to play for Sundowns. If I were to give you that position as the coach now and say okay I’ve not been playing Anthony Laffor, and George,” Mngqithi was quoted as saying by IOL.
“That position is the position that Mshishi (Themba Zwane) is playing. It is also the position that Gaston (Sirino) is playing. It is also a position that Ali Meza is playing. It is also a position that Pitso, the youngster (Siphelele Mkhulisi) is playing. Aubrey Ngoma is also playing that position,” he added.
“It is not easy for us because if we put that one ahead of that one, it is purely because at training we see that he is going to do better. When he is not playing well it gives an opportunity to ask why that one is not playing,” Mngqithi explained.
“It is not about him accepting what I’ve just said. It is all about him fighting for himself. He must fight,“ Mngqithi remarked.
“Fortunately when you’ve been a big player maybe it is very difficult to come to a team where you are not perceived as one of their key players,” Mngqithi continued.
While Lebese continues to struggle for first team football, he still has the support of the Brazilians assistant.
“He (Lebese) is a very good player, believe me. He one of the most technically (gifted) players that I’ve worked with,” he said.
“I’ve just prayed that he gets an opportunity one day and he takes it because it is about getting an opportunity and taking it. All these players have heard their own opportunities and they don’t take them,” he concluded.