Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila chief executive officer Sello Chokoe has confirmed to the Siya crew that the club will only have three substitutes on their bench this afternoon.
Ahead of their opening topflight match, a home fixture against SuperSport United in the MTN8 quarterfinals, the rookies will not have the full complement of 18 players at the Thohoyandou Stadium due to several issues.
Only 14 players have been included in coach Joel Masutha’s squad.
“We started this team with only two players, goalkeeper Brighton Mhlongo and defender Lehlohonolo Nonyane, whom I had to recall back to the club because his contract with Bidvest Wits (whose status TTM purchased) had expired,” Chokoe explained.
“I also have a lot of players on trial and five players from when the team was still in the lower division and it’s not yet clear who should give them their clearances. As a result, we have opted to rather play it safe – my main concern is compliance. We can’t begin our first game in the topflight and it is being played under protest.”
TTM unveiled 22 players earlier this week, but Chokoe said some of them did not yet have work permits, while others, like Gustavo Paez, have either not arrived in the country or are in quarantine as per the safety and health protocols enforced by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“I could have chosen to throw them all in, but that would be a risk. We are growing this brand and I do not want us to get off to a bad start. Why should we have players that might not even form part of our squad moving forward? You see a player on the bench today and never again for the rest of the season? We can’t let one game ruin the 30 plus that we are going to play for the rest of the season,” he explained.
Story by @superjourno
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