Benni: Sometimes I do the unexpected
Posted: 16 December 2018 Time: 14:00
Cape Town City coach Benni McCarthy has explained his new role for star player Ayanda Patosi, and was well-pleased after the playmaker’s first attempt in his new position.
McCarthy fielded a starting XI with no striker in his side’s recent match-up against Chippa United, leaving usual starter Siphelele Mthembu on the bench while utilising Patosi in a false nine position.
The tactic, which opposition coach Joel Masutha admits took him off guard, seemingly worked according to plan when Riyaad Norodien ran into space to then score the game’s opener, only for City to concede as Rhulani Manzini’s fierce free-kick drew his side level in the eventual 1-1 draw.
“We went for Patosi in a false nine position, rather than having ‘Shaka Zulu’, because in our previous game against Highlands Park, the players were following people all over the park,” McCarthy said as he revealed the thinking behind his new tactic. “Teams are becoming aware of our movements and because of the speedy players we used against Chippa – the likes of 'Schillo' [Norodien], Surprise Ralani and Thabo Nodada – the plan was for Patosi to drop and drag players out of position at the back, allowing the likes of Norodien, Surprise and Nodada to get in, and that’s exactly how our goal came about.”
McCarthy says he was delighted with how his plan worked out, hinting that he may use that set-up again in future while warning his players to always expect the unexpected.
“I’m very happy,” he said of the formation. “It gives me some food for thought, and for everybody in the team, that we are all competing. And sometimes I do the unexpected and against Chippa we pulled it off. It gave us a lot more football on the pitch, letting our players get on the ball more and play inter-linking passes and get in behind the defence. Patosi is one of the most technically gifted players in the league, so it worked out perfectly for us. It’s just a shame we didn’t walk away with all three points, but I think it’s the least we could have gotten from Chippa.”
Mid-table City have one remaining fixture for 2018 against Bloemfontein Celtic at Cape Town Stadium on December 22.