THE BREAKDOWN: 5 Players Jayiya Could Replace At Chiefs?
Who could Bhongolethu Jayiya replace at Kaizer Chiefs?
New Kaizer Chiefs' signing Bhongolethu Jayiya will be coming into the club to provide a solution for their difficulties in the final third, but which first team regular’s position is at risk now that he’s arrived?
Chiefs confirmed Jayiya’s signing on Thursday afternoon and brings a wealth of top flight experience, having scored 24 goals and making 11 assists in 117 Absa Premiership appearances, while on the books at Bidvest Wits, Maritzburg United and Cape Town City (including two seasons with Mpumalanga Black Aces). Yet, perhaps the best indicator of his quality was a hattrick in less than 10 minutes against Chippa United on 3 April, where his lethal finishing was put on display in full force. Exactly that kind of performance is what Steve Komphela will be hoping to get out of the 27-year-old, but before the former Maritzburg United coach can think about getting the best out of Jayiya, he has to decide which of his current starters will fall down the pecking order, if any.
Looking at Jayiya’s direct competition in Chiefs’ attacking roles, he would be competing for a starting role with Bernard Parker, George Lebese, Joseph Molangoane, Siphiwe Tshabalala and William Twala, as things stand in the Chiefs squad at present.
The first thing to take note of is that Jayiya spent more time on the pitch than any of the Chiefs players except for Tshabalala and Parker, who matched his tally of 24 appearances throughout the season. However, it was only Tshabalala’s 20 starts that bettered Jayiya’s 15. Jayiya therefore has an automatic head start on most of his counterparts in terms of consistent playing time on the pitch over the last year.
Jayiya averaged 42.7 touches and 30.5 passes on a per 90 minutes basis last season, fewer than all of his Chiefs teammates, but that can be expected as Chiefs saw more of the ball (467.2 passes per match) than Cape Town City (413.7 passes per match). In addition, only Twala attempted more crosses from open play (five to Jayiya’s 2.8), although both Jayiya and Twala were below average with their crossing accuracy (21.1%).
Jayiya’s 0.33 non-penalty goals per 90 was close to Tshabalala’s 0.35, which was the best figure at Chiefs. However, it’s his shooting where things get interesting. While he attempted 1.48 shots per 90 minutes, he was great at getting in the box as 90% of those shots were located inside the area. It allowed him to have a 55% shot accuracy (none of his counterparts managed more than 43.8%) and 25% conversion rate (only Tshabalala and Lebese came close with 20% each– both better than the Chiefs players selected for this.
Effectively, Jayiya is not suited for an attacking midfield role, which is the position in an attacking formation that has rendered Tshabalala a truly indispensable for Amakhosi. Therefore, he is likely to play either on the wing, where he’s proven to be capable of doing so through his crossing ability. However, where he appears to be most capable is in and around the box.
His ability to get into the box and to shoot with accuracy and precision makes him the ideal candidate to take on a role that has now troubled his new club’s fortunes for far longer than would make the fans, management and the players feel satisfied. Bernard Parker’s contribution towards 10 goals last season (five goals and five assists), will give him a foot in for the starting role next season, but with Jayiya’s on-field performances in 2016/17, “Die Hond” will have to look over his shoulder because his first team status may come under threat.
Who do you think Jayiya could replace in Chiefs starting XI next season?