Benni persevering with Patosi

Patosi, who signed with the Citizens last year after five years in Belgium, was his side’s highest league goal scorer with four strikes last season, yet endured a troublesome return to South Africa, going AWOL at times while also battling with fitness issues.

After missing the first two league games this season, the 25-year-old has featured in all three games since, with McCarthy pleased with his effort and attitude so far.

“If you can get him to play as much as possible, only football games will bring his fitness up,” the City head coach said. “But he’s done well, he’s been very good in training, working hard and he’s been trying … with me it’s about trying to make a change and a difference. He’s changed his lifestyle and changed his mindset, so he’s been a bit more consistent in training, and I think that’s why you’ll find him in most of the starting 11s now because he’s trying to make a difference. And he knows the importance he has when he’s at his best in this team.”

Despite his troublesome past, McCarthy says he will persevere with his talisman, and backs him to come good soon after a promising start.

“Because of the attitude he’s shown in training and on a daily basis, I’m going to persevere with him and keep the faith, and keep giving him the benefit of the doubt, up until he proves us otherwise,” McCarthy said.

“But I’m very happy with his application. Last week all his shots were sky high, against Mamelodi Sundowns they were all directed at the keeper and hopefully on Wednesday, they’ll all start finding the corner. And hopefully in the next game against Sundowns, everything he touches will end up in the back of the net. That’s the aim.”

City’s next task is a tricky trip to Free State Stars, who they line up against in an Absa Premiership clash at Goble park on Wednesday.

Kick-off is at 19h30.