Usuthu defend Reserve League form

Premiership

Usuthu have failed to pick up a point from their five Reserve League games so far, yet alone gaining any victories, as they sit bottom of Group B in the new development league, which kicked off its inaugural season last month.

The only other side that has come close to matching the form of the Durbanites has been Group A strugglers Moroka Swallows, although they have at least managed two draws to date.

AmaZulu coach Daniel Haswell, though, insists there is no knock-on effect from what has gone on with the senior team and their coach Craig Rosslee.

"It's certainly not a rub-off effect because we've got our own objectives to work towards," he told PSL.co.za. "Our main one is to identify which young players are ready to step up to the next level. Which ones can help the first team and it's what has been asked of us.

"Obviously as players and coaches we all want to win. But I think we're achieving the objectives we want to out of this exercise.

"We have struggled a little bit, but we certainly haven’t been outplayed in all our games. That's just been down to individual mistakes, which those players will learn and grow from."

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Haswell also felt his side was not doing as well as some others because they had stuck to their guns and only used Under-19 players, as per the draft rules of the competition, which have since changed to Under-23 and also allow the use of three senior or overage players.

"If you remember initially this league was going to be Under-19 and we decided to stick with the initial group of players," he says. "We haven’t used any first team players or those that have played for the first team this season, we've used those that we can identify and are the future."

Haswell was adamant that there will not be any long-term effect on his players despite constantly ending on the wrong end of results.

He added: "Of course they'll take a bit of a knock to their confidence, but they are young and it will test their character. We expect them to come through unscathed.

"The players are enjoying it and it's a wonderful chance for them to come in many cases against some senior players and internationals too. So that's a huge positive."

AmaZulu next play Bidvest Wits this Saturday.

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