Benni happy but has to deal with niggling injuries

Benni McCarthy during a Cape Town City FC training session
Benni McCarthy during a Cape Town City FC training session
Image: Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images

Two wins from their opening three encounters has Cape Town City coach Benni McCarthy smiling from ear to ear even though he must do some more reshuffling in his defence before his next game.

City advanced to the MTN8 semifinals for a third successive victory after beating Maritzburg United away on Sunday.

They now turn their focus back to the league, where Lamontville Golden Arrows are their next opponents‚ on Saturday at the Cape Town Stadium.

This week’s priority will be to clear a treatment room full of players with niggling injuries such as Teko Modise‚ Mozambican international fullback Edmilson Dove‚ Kwanda Mngonyama and Ebrahim Seedat‚ McCarthy, who has been short of defenders, said.

Those on the injury list were joined by skipper Thamsanqa Mkhize‚ who had to go to hospital after suffering a horror cut above his eye following a clash of heads in Sunday’s cup tie and Siphelele Mthembu‚ whose ankle was hurt in a bruising tackle.

“I’m hoping to have almost my full squad available against Arrows, which will be a positive to have because my biggest concern now is Mkhize and Shaka Zulu [Mthembu],

“I’ve had to shift things around because I’ve got injuries,” McCarthy said.

“Already, I have had to move players; my centre back is playing left back [Kouassi Kouadja]; right back is playing centre back [Keanu Cupido] so it’s a bit of shuffling that is going on but overall I’m satisfied.

“I’m happy with how my team has been playing and the commitment of the players. There has been much improvement.”

Mkhize is unlikely to play against Arrows, so Cupido should switch to the right with Kouadja going back to partner Tareeq Filies in the heart of the defence as Edmilson or Seedat play on the left of the back four.

McCarthy had previously sounded positive about his preseason signings with city’s new acquisitions such as Riyaad Norodien‚ Mthembu and Kouadja all making an immediate impact.