Hunt offers Nurkovic, Castro update

MTN8

Kaizer Chiefs head coach Gavin Hunt confirmed he will be without star strikers Samir Nurkovic and Leonardo Castro for the start of the 2020/21 season.

Nurkovic and Castro produced a menacing partnership up front for Chiefs with 22 goals between them over the course of the 2019/20 campaign but Hunt will be unable to call upon either for his debut against Maritzburg United on Sunday.

With Nurkovic recently going under the knife for his groin injury and Castro suffering from a recurring hamstring problem, neither player has worked with the new Chiefs boss during pre-season preparations.

But Hunt is confident he can make do with the current options at his disposal despite also being unable to reinforce his squad in the transfer market due to the current FIFA transfer ban.

Scroll through the gallery to see the which Chiefs players are suspended for the MTN8 showdown this weekend

"I have a very good squad of players but a lot of them have been injured, the top goalscorer Samir [Nurkovic] has been injured, he won't play after his operation, he hasn't been training for one day and he'll be out for some time," Hunt said.

"Castro was also injured before the end of last season and he hasn't trained much, those are the two major injuries. They were the cornerstone of the team that did really well and that is a problem going forward."

He added: "We'll have to re-align ourselves, reshape ourselves to play to the strengths of the players we've got. I'll try and do that and I'll say it again, there's six or seven coming into the reckoning to fill in for the injured players, the youngsters also.

"The ban is well documented, I knew about that coming here, but we'll go forward, have belief in what we've got and play in a way that suits what we've got."

Amakhosi host Eric Tinkler's side at FNB Stadium in their MTN8 quarter-final tie on Sunday afternoon at 15h00.

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