Larsen: Unfair to judge Mahachi
Posted: 14 April 2017 Time: 21:25
Golden Arrows coach Clinton Larsen has revealed a heartbreaking set-back that has affected key midfielder Kudakwashe Mahachi’s contribution to the team this season.
Mahachi, who joined Arrows on a permanent move from Mamelodi Sundowns at the start of the season, has managed just three goals and two assists in 14 starts this season despite showing plenty of promise during his loan spell last season.
The 23-year-old attacker, meanwhile, has been coming to terms with the loss of his four-year-old daughter Deneo, which Larsen explains has had a massive psychological effect on his game.
"Mahachi, in the first round of the league, a lot of people don't know he lost his four-year-old baby girl, so he went through a tough time in the first round," explained the Arrows mentor.
"He missed a big chunk of games probably 10 games, so it's a little bit unfair to judge him on this season because he went through a lot personally.
"But he's fine now, he's back in good form, the energy is back, he's looking lively and I think he's done very well. He's been one of our more consistent players in the last five or six games."
The Zimbabwean international has also been seen operating from relatively deep in his own half of late, with Larsen explaining his change in role and how he has improved tremendously on his defensive duties.
"We're trying to get him into a role where he's got to come and drop a little bit, and get the ball. He's very good on the ball," he added.
"He's got that penetration we look for from midfield, and we're also getting him to try and support the top when the ball does go forward – he's got the legs to do so.
"What he's improved on is his defensive ability. He was never a player to track back and tackle, and I think that part of his game has improved tremendously. He's becoming a more complete player now.
"Gone are the days when attacking players didn't do their defensive responsibilities, now it's a big part of attackers games to get back behind the ball and give the team shape, and he's done a great job so I'm very happy with what he's given us."
Abafana Bes'thende next take on Ajax Cape Town at the Princess Magogo Stadium on Saturday afternoon (15h00).