Chippa United coach Dan “Dance” Malesela does not want to be seen as the team’s messiah as they prepare to square up with Nedbank Cup defending champions, SuperSport United in a repeat of Wednesday’s fixture.
The Chilli Boys will lock horns with the wounded Matsantsantsa at Sisa Dukashe Stadium in Mdantsane tomorrow.
On Wednesday the Eastern Cape side emerged victorious with a 3-0 thumping over United in an Absa Premiership encounter that eased Chippa’s relegation woes.
It was only the team’s second win this year and Malesela’s first match back at the helm after Chippa had put him on “special leave”.
Chippa lost all three games he was sidelined under assistant coach Mbuyiselo Sambu.
Speaking to journalists yesterday, Malesela said they will approach to tomorrow’s game the same as on Wednesday as they were “striving to keep the momentum of winning going”.
Should Chippa win tomorrow, they would continue with their impressive run in the Nedbank Cup.
“Silverware says a lot to people. It shows that you’re doing something,” he said.
Should the Port Elizabeth outfit go all the way and be crowned Ke Yona winners, it would end a disappointing season for the side on a high note.
Malesela’s return has resulted in the team only needing a point to survive relegation and avoid the playoffs when they play their last league game away to fellow relegation-threatened Free State Stars, and has some soccer fanatics describing him as the “messiah”.
But when that was put to him, he smiled shyly and said that would mean he was bigger than the game, which was not the case.
“I’m here to do a job like anybody else,” he said.
The coach is aware that SuperSport will play a different team with regulars, Reneilwe Letsholonyane, Thuso Phala and Onismor Bhasera likely to be in the starting team.
Playing at home in front of a likely packed Sisa Dukashe Stadium and coming from a convincing win against SuperSport makes the Chilli Boys likely go into the game as favourites.
Malesela is hoping the fans will come out in numbers and energise his charges as they look to end their East London venture on a positive note.
“The players know I’m one who always says ‘you must never ever, ever lose your home games,” he said.