The 28-year-old featured in nine league games over the first half of the season, yet was utilised more as a defensive midfielder by former coach Stanley Menzo, with the club left thin in the centre of the park owing to Travis Graham’s contractual dispute, as new signings Mario Booysen and Isaac Nhlapo were preferred in central defence.
Despite largely operating out of his favoured position, Pietersen said he was “okay” with his personal contribution to the struggling Cape side last year, as he awaits to see where he will settle under Ertugral after playing in central defence in the 2-1 loss to Maritzburg United on Friday night.
“Personally it’s been okay,” Pietersen told KickOff.com. “Obviously the previous coach had asked me to play in a holding midfield role, a position which I can play but am obviously more comfortable playing as a centre-back – that’s where I played most of my games last season.
“So it’s been a bit of a change, but I’ve been doing okay and doing a job for the team. The coach had asked me if I’d feel okay playing in that position for the good of the team, and I’m a team player, I’ll do anything for the team. ”
Ajax have the luxury of staying in the Mother City for the next month, with their six games in January all taking place at Cape Town Stadium, with Pietersen hoping the club will make the most of their home ground advantage.
“We’ve got [another] five in a row in Cape Town, so that’s a positive. So we’re really looking forward to that,” he added.