Maimane Phiri urges Lebogang Manyama to remain patient at Konyaspor
Posted: 17 March 2018 Time: 12:00
Lebogang Manyama’s mentor Maimane Phiri has urged the former Cape Town City captain to be strong as he waits to make his first appearance in 2018 for Turkish side Konyaspor.
Manyama left the PSL after winning the coveted Footballer of the Season award, but it has been a difficult first season abroad. He made seven league appearances in the first half of the season, but is yet to feature for the topflight outfit this year.
Phiri, who played in Europe during his time as a footballer, says he also struggled to settle in when he was in Turkey. He played for Turkish teams Gençlerbirliği, Vanspor and Samsunspor.
“It’s been tough for him there, but he is holding on. He is a strong boy and does not give up. He went there with a purpose and he is still focused on that purpose. It’s not easy going to Europe and taking someone’s place.
He has to work hard, but the good thing is that he makes the 18-man squad,” Phiri tells KickOff.com.
“I always chat with him, almost every day. It’s important to have a strong heart when you play in Europe. I had a similar problem when I got to Turkey. Some players adapt easy and some take long, but for me it was a bit hard.”
The former Bafana Bafana midfielder adds: “Pollen [Ndlanya] had the same problem, Helman [Mkhalele] went through it and so too Dumi Ngobe. As a player, you need to remember that you are going there to make a living for yourself and family and to grow away from the luxury life [in South Africa]. He will come right.”