Nthobisi Ndlovu once decided to give up a career in football to focus on supporting his family - but on February 2, he will get his chance to face off against South African giants Kaizer Chiefs after making the cut for the Nedbank Ke Yona Team.
Ndlovu was once with the Platinum Stars reserve side, but says that his need for an income at the time halted his progress, "That’s right, I was with Platinum Stars B team at the same time that I was studying but with some family issues, I had to return home to KwaZulu-Natal to find a job because I was not getting any income and I had to provide my family with some sustenance.
"It is tough, sometimes you have the choice to do things and sometimes you have no choice, you must just do what is right. Who knows what might have been? But the passion of football was never taken away from me, it still burns inside me."
Regarding the training ahead of the clash, he admitted that it has been hard work but feels that they have continuously seen improvements as they get ready for Amakhosi.
"We have four great coaches who have so much knowledge and experience and that has helped us a lot. We are learning something new each and every day and I know that we are in very good hands.
"I can see a big improvement with the squad. We have been playing against PSL clubs in friendly matches and you can see from those games that we are getting better. Obviously we train very hard, but it is not the same as playing matches. That is where you see how far you have come. A lot of people have already taken notice of us, we have been getting calls from scouts and agents. But I have told them I will not sign anything until after the game against Kaizer Chiefs."
The defender also explained how he went from controlling the middle of the park to the centre of defence, adding, "I used to play as a central midfielder and was only moved to centre-back when my team was short of players. But I did well there and my coach said I must stay there. I like to build-up from the back so that we can play good football, just like Barcelona do. Because I believe good football produces good results and that is what everybody wants."
The Ke Yona team were originally meant to face the reigning Nedbank Cup champions on January 19, but due to Bafana Bafana's participation in Chan, the game was moved to February 2 - with the match getting underway at 15h00, at the Lucas Moripe Stadium.
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