Thisisfootball.Africa’s Clifton Mabasa sat down with the former Orlando Pirates star, Isaac Chansa to discuss Kaizer Chiefs and Pirates issues. We asked the ex-midfielder why the two giants of SA football are still failing to win the league title seven years later – with Sundowns doing as they please.
While the Zambian international credits Masandawana for the great work they have done in the past few years, he has suggested what the Soweto giants must do to bring back the competition in the league.
Clifton Mabasa (CM): Isaac, thank you for coming through, let’s kick-start our conversation. Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates have been struggling to win the league title, it’s been years now, what do you think is their problem?
Isaac Chansa (IC): Thanks brother. Maybe it’s about not signing quality players, Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates have no quality when it comes to players. These are two teams who should always go for big players to keep up the competition between them and Mamelodi Sundowns. At Sundowns, they have been so consistent in terms of results because they have got quality players. Whenever they sign, they go for top players. It is as simple as that.
CM: Good point…
IC: If Pirates and Chiefs want to compete with Sundowns, I urge them to buy quality players. It’s been years now with Sundowns dominating the league. And if Pirates and Chiefs bring players, we must see quality in them, if you play for the big two, you must know your story, you must add value. They can’t sign for just signing, we have to start seeing your value as soon as you get there.
CM: That’s exactly what their fans are saying. In that regard, what do you think Sundowns are doing well that the big two are not doing exactly?
IC: Sundowns have good scouts all over the place. That is their first power, possibly. Okay, look they have players from South America, they have been getting quality that side. But still, it’s not about players from there. I watched their Nedbank Cup game against Richards Bay, there was no player from South America or elsewhere in Europe. During that game, you could see how those South African guys enjoyed sharing the ball. If you have quality players, even the coach won’t struggle to get results.
CM: One can argue that many players joined Downs from SuperSport, Leopards, Baroka and Celtic. So perhaps it’s not about having money to go for expensive South American players.
IC: Yes, it’s not about money, some came to Sundowns as big stars from so-called small teams because if you can look at Khuliso Mudau, Sifiso Ngobeni, Neo Maema, Thabiso Kutumela and others. Hence, I said, these players were performing every week at a high standard at for example Leopards or Celtic. Then Sundowns managed to see them and signed them. It tells you those players joined Sundowns as quality players, so it goes back to scouting and consistency of those players.
CM: But we have the likes of Ashley Du Preez who was doing well at Stellenbosch, Kamohelo Mahlatsi, Austin Dube just to mention few, were doing well at their previous teams…
IC: If you buy a player from a small team, maybe from Richards Bay or Stellenbosch, that player must be able to perform at Chiefs or Pirates. You can’t just buy because he played well for one season. Just like I’m telling you, Mudau was a consistent player at Black Leopards for years and look at him now, he is one of the best right backs in the country.
When you have the bulk of quality players on your team, like at Sundowns, then you will win games. Look, we can take Lionel Messi to any team, but with no quality players surrounding him, he will never do anything. Let me give you an example about Messi. Messi at Barcelona was a star, winning Ballon D’or, but whenever he went to the national team, he was not the same player because of the surrounding players. Barcelona’s players knew him. So, that’s what maybe had happened to some players you have just mentioned.
CM: Perhaps that’s the issue neh, the lack of consistency at the Soweto giants?
IC: Consistency is a key, Pirates and Chiefs must find their winning eleven and the right combinations because at Sundowns, when coach Pitso Mosimane left, not many things have changed. They are still working under that philosophy, which I’m sure it’s one of the reasons why they keep grinding positive results.
And when you look at Bucs and Amakhosi, that is lacking. When last did Vincent Pule play five games in a row? It’s very difficult to see that, today he’s in, tomorrow is off, I’m just giving an example.
At Sundowns, you can take Themba Zwane out and maybe Andile Jali, you won’t see any different because the whole team knows each other. But at Pirates or Chiefs, if you take one player, you will notice his absence and then the team is inconsistent.
What I can say to our coaches at Soweto teams is that at Chiefs, Pirates or Sundowns, it’s a must to win every day because supporters won’t give you a chance. They need results only. Our coaches should at least try quickly to find the combinations and keep that consistency, so they can compete with Mamelodi Sundowns.
CM: Let’s look conclude by looking at the new Pirates striker from Cameroon, Saurobou Marou, what do you make of this signing?
IC: I would say obviously for Pirates to bring a player, especially a striker from Cameroon, I’m sure they saw quality in him, and he was scoring goals that side from what I read about him. So, we can just hope that he’s going to score goals for us. I was not following him before. But as I said, if we bring a player, he must show quality and do what we expect him to do. Pirates are a big team and there is a too much pressure.
If you play for Chiefs and Pirates, you must work hard and give back by helping the team to win. They earn a lot of money, so they must give back to the team. It’s their job to make their supporters happy.
CM: Mr. Chansa, as ThisIsFootball.Africa, we appreciate your time, let’s continue next week, thanks so much.
Also Read: Isaac Chansa – We Will Beat Our Small Boys!