Kaizer Chiefs interim coach Arthur Zwane has identified what has led to the club’s struggles this season in acknowledging the challenges and seeking solutions.
Chiefs are closing off their seventh consecutive season without silverware with only second or third place which carries CAF tickets to play for but reaching that destination is not in their hands as well.
"It has been a difficult one for us with poor results here and there, but it boils down to one thing in that we couldn’t do a proper pre-season after having come from the Champions League," says Zwane.
"It was always going to be difficult as time goes on and hence, we found ourselves in this situation, but it is part of the game.
"We had challenges of not bringing in new players (when they served the ban) and it has only been this season that we have been able to bring in new players.
"So, we needed to help those players understand how things are done here and the pressure and responsibility that comes with being at Kaizer Chiefs. It will always be difficult to get it right in one season knowing where we come from, but I believe we are on the right track.
"It has been a setback and not a train smash. Next season is another season to redeem ourselves and get things where they belong," he says with hope while revealing the pain that he has had to endure in recent times.
"There is no way I can sleep well. Sometimes I don’t even eat well because I believe I can help the club. I know the team in and out and I see the future is bright. I know all the players from the Under-13s. I have been here for 22 years now going 23 so it is painful to see the team in this state that it is in right now.
"But I know that it will change for the better because this is not the first time that we find ourselves in this situation. In my first season (2000/01) we didn’t win anything but the coach that we had never gave up on us and kept on pushing us.
"So, I believe the same will happen if we bring in the right players. Those are the challenges, but we will never give up because there is no doubt that we will eventually get it right," says Zwane.
Chiefs play champions Mamelodi Sundowns late on Sunday afternoon at FNB Stadium seeking consolation after failing to put up any challenge for the title.
"We know that it is not going to be easy because we are playing against the champions.
"A team that has been doing well for many seasons now so we are looking forward to the game with the hope that we can be able to grind a result and get three points," he says.