Moffat Mungazi Sports Correspondent
SEASONED midfielder, Willard Katsande, was left bewildered by how Kaizer Chiefs’ campaign wobbled to an anti-climactic end in the just-ended South African football season.
Despite leading proceedings for the greater part of the marathon, the Soweto giants faltered at the final hurdle to finish as runners-up to defending champions, Mamelodi Sundowns, who pipped them to the post by two points.
Sadly, the washout denied Amakhosi glorious golden jubilee celebrations in a year they are commemorating half-a-century of existence since their formation.
Club captain Katsande is now picking up the pieces from their shattered season and has rallied his troops not to lose heart, but to use their hurt to plot another assault on the title.
“The manner things panned out in the end was sad and painful. We wanted this season to be special. We were supposed to finish in style as we have turned 50 years old. Toasting to the championship would have put the icing on the cake. Our fantastic fans deserved better, but unfortunately we could not deliver despite having given it our best shot.
“However, we cannot mourn forever. We are professionals and own up to our shortcomings. We will stick together, take it all in our stride and move on. There is no need to point fingers at anyone because we win and lose together as a team.
“Whatever happened is now in the past. We have to start preparing for the new campaign with renewed hope and vigour. We have learned our lessons the hard way and have to come right next time.”
With a truncated pre-season, the tough-tackling midfielder is not dwelling much on disappointments. A brief soul-searching period will immediately be followed by meticulous planning for the season as the club regroups for duty.
“The idea is to keep going without losing our hunger for triumph. As l always say, winners never quit and quitters never win. This statement spurs me on during such difficult times,” Katsande told Post Sport from his Naturena base earlier this week.
He, however, remained coy and could not be drawn into discussing his future plans at the Glamour Boys, where a shake-up is expected in the squad.
The skipper has been at the club since 2011 when he made his debut against nemesis Orlando Pirates, racking up nearly 300 caps and winning several silverware.
Chiefs are also expected to unveil a new coach after gaffer, Ernst Middendorp, was fired.