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Cape Town City took a gamble with Riekerink and his appointment is haunting them

20:12 SAST 2020/01/13
Jan Olde Riekerink 11072019
The Dutch mentor took over a sinking ship from Benni and he's struggling to steer it in the right direction, and fans are already calling for his head

Cape Town City succumbed to their eighth league defeat of the season this past weekend, and fingers are pointing at the management for sacking Benni McCarthy.

In fact, the main issue here is the club’s hierarchy’s decision to replace McCarthy with Jan Olde Riekerink, who hasn’t really done anything better than what the former Bafana Bafana striker was doing for the club.

It may be too early to judge Riekerink as he has just been in charge of eight league games thus far, but his appointment may soon come back to haunt City who are in the bottom half of the table and flirting with relegation.

When Rierkerink arrived, City were expected to rise from the ashes and play the type of football their fans have become accustomed to, but this hasn’t been the case.

The team looks demoralised under the Dutch mentor and there is still an element of inconsistency in their game – hence the four defeats, three draws and a single win since McCarthy was sacked.

City needed a coach with PSL experience to take over from McCarthy because the season was already underway and they were struggling for results.

It’s fair to say City took a huge gamble with Riekerink, and how long they are going to keep him at the club remains to be seen – because the players appear not to be playing for him.

South African fans are yet to see Riekerink’s philosophy and what he’s trying to do at City, and it is for this reason the team hasn’t improved since his arrival.

City’s defence is a shambles and it’s surprising because they were once one of the toughest teams to beat in the league – they have given away goals very cheaply and this has contributed to their dismal season.

McCarthy picked up this problem at the start of the season and went public about he had asked the club to allow him to bring in a defender – but the management took him for granted and City continued to leak goals.

This hasn’t been solved – Taariq Fielies is undoubtedly one of the young and promising defenders in the country and can play at any team but he’s looked very relaxed this season and out of sorts under Riekerink.

Riekerink should have accepted this job with a clear vision on how he was going to make City great again – perhaps start with solving their defensive problems and then move on to sharpening their attack – there’s clearly no turnaround strategy from the coach and fans are right to call for his head.

We saw Mpho Makola returning from suspension to play upfront while players such as Mark Mayambela have been overlooked in the last three games. 

Players such as Siphelele Mthembu and Kermit Erasmus have lost confidence in themselves – and they'are not giving City their return on investment.

For instance, Erasmus said he joined the club because of McCarthy as he believed he would help him take his football to another level, and he has been a completely different player since his former coach left the club.

It’s not surprising that he’s still sitting on seven goals.