Kurt Lentjies to stay put at Chippa

Kurt Lentjies of Chippa United says he is still with the club for the time being.
Kurt Lentjies of Chippa United says he is still with the club for the time being.

Veteran Chippa United midfielder Kurt Lentjies says he has not parted ways with the club and was just as surprised as everybody to hear  he has been released.

Reports last week suggested that the Chilli Boys had axed a group of players including Lentjies, 35, Andile Mbenyane, 32, Thabo Rakhale, 30, Lehlogonolo Masalesa, 28, and Diamond Thopola, 29.

Lentjies, however, has refuted claims that he was axed from the Port Elizabeth outfit.

“I have not left the club — I am still training with the team.

“I also saw it online that I have left but the club has not told me anything,” he told Sowetan.

“We don’t know what the future holds but for now I am still with the team.

“We actually played a friendly game on Saturday and I was part of it.

“Look, I don’t want to comment on the coach or our relationship, but all I can say it that nothing has changed.”

Lentjies’s utterances are in contrast to the admission by an emotional Mbenyane last week that he had been let go by the club.

It appears that the veteran players are out of favour with new coach Rulani Mokwena, who is on loan to the club from Orlando Pirates.

Chippa United owner Chippa Mpengesi last week said a final decision was yet to be made and that Mokwena would be involved in the decision.

“Look, I’m still going to engage the coach, this is not the final decision,” Mpengesi  said.

“But I’m going to sit down with him to say let’s wait until the end of the season then we can take that decision, because that could have been an emotional one.

“One thing is for sure, Mbenyane, as much as people think he has done a lot for the club, he has abused the relationship.

“I’m sure he and the coach can sit down and resolve the problems, but if he comes to training drunk there is nothing we can do.”