Shakes Mashaba thinks Alice-born soccer whizz-kid Makhosandile Plaatjie is on his way to a successful career in top-flight football.
This after Plaatjie’s man-of-the-match performance during the Nedbank Ke Yona clash against SuperSport United at the Makhulong Stadium in Tembisa over the weekend.
The former Bafana Bafana mentor and Ke Yona selector coach told the Dispatch after the match that the young player just needed the right mentor at his side to take him far.
“I don’t normally like to single out players from [the] other boys but he is [a] good player and he has a bright future ahead of him.
“I know the club [Golden Arrows] he is attached to, and if they give him game time he will definitely improve.
“You’ve seen his performance today he is not the type of player that you would say maybe he will make [it], he is on his way up for sure.
“If he can get somebody right to advise him, to give him more tactical skills and match intelligence. I think that’s what all these boys lacked today.
“A little bit of thinking would have killed SuperSport United and good luck to all these boys with their clubs, they all deserve it.”
Plaatjie said he repeatedly told himself that he would put fear aside and do what he always does best.
“Playing against PSL players had no impact on my game but I was nervous at first.
“Coach Monde [Hlatswayo] told to loosen up because he could see I was not myself.
“The partnership I had with my team was the most important aspect of my performance today because without the support from the guys I would have not gotten the man-of-the-match award.
He said the award indicated that he was on the right path and that he just needed to work harder to achieve bigger goals.
“I think all these aspirations I have – like playing for the national team – will happen because I just need to continue doing my best.”
The centre-forward said as soon as he came home he would use part of the R10000 prize to do a traditional ceremony to thank his ancestors for the blessings he had been receiving throughout this tournament.
“The support back home was amazing, even when I was coming to play Raymond Mhlaba Municipality was there at the airport to say good luck to me and to motivate me.
“That inspired me to do well for my hometown and my province.
“I always watch Matsatsantsa and I know how they play.
“I feel so bad Morgan Gould was not playing today because I wanted him on the field but at least Mashamaite [Tefu] and others were there to challenge me, so playing with them made even more confident in myself now.”
The marvel said he was not disappointed that he didn’t score because his teammates were giving him chances but it wasn’t meant to be.