'ODG' to reward his players

Highlands have already booked themselves a spot in the top flight for next season after hammering University of Pretoria 5-1 over the weekend. The Lions of the North, who have only spent one season in the National First Division after getting relegated from the PSL last season, have had an incredible campaign, going for 21 matches without a defeat.

Da Gama has confirmed that he will strengthen his team for next season, but won’t completely disregard the players who helped the Tembisa based side win automatic promotion.

"You need to reward them, [but] yes we will strengthen here and there. The PSL is [a] very good and tough league,” said the former Bafana Bafana assistant coach.

"The nice thing is that we have played two friendlies against [Orlando] Pirates. We played two friendlies against [Kaizer] Chiefs and two friendlies against [Bidvest] Wits just to gauge where we are. We haven't lost any of those friendlies, but it’s just a friendly. We are under no illusions that we have to strengthen the team, but we need to reward these boys,” he said.

Despite securing automatic promotion with four matches to spare, Highlands will not take it easy. They want to win their remaining matches.

"It's all about professionalism. We got Mthatha [Bucks] next at home, then Cape Town All Stars away and Leopards and then Stellenbosch. You have to be as professional as possible,” he said.