Baxter gives insight to versatile Ngcobo role


Kaizer Chiefs head coach Stuart Baxter has outlined the various roles that the versatile Njabulo Ngcobo could fulfil following his arrival from Swallows during the off-season.

Since being crowned the Defender of the Season for the 2020/2021 season, Ngcobo is yet to secure a regular role in his favoured position for Chiefs under Baxter.

With Baxter preferring the experienced pairing of Daniel Cardoso and Mulomowandau Mathoho so far this season.

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Ngcobo also showed the full array of his versatility after featuring in a defensive midfield role for Bafana Bafana in their recent win over Ethiopia in a World Cup qualifier.  

"I obviously don't have a crystal ball so I don't know what will happen with regards to injuries," says Baxter on Ngcobo's chances of featuring as a central defender.

"I don't think he did a bad job at Bafana, absolutely not. I certainly thought there were players that were worse than him, absolutely.

"I do think you can look at him either as a centre-back or as a defensively strong central midfielder. He is versatile enough to play both of those positions.

"Of course, he hasn't played in midfield as much, but you can deploy him there as virtually a third centre-back pushing him to run into possession and dropping in between more or less when you are defending.

"His versatility gives us options and it is certainly something that I don't want to throw away without having a proper look at because he has to find his distances, he has to find his balance and he has to find his intentions and be comfortable in that role," explains the veteran mentor.

Ngcobo was named in the starting line-up as Chiefs thrashed Chippa United by 4-0 to ease the pressure off Baxter.

The 68-year-old was pleased with his side's performance with attacker Keagan Dolly starring in the morale-boosting victory.

"I thought the lads played well tonight," Baxter told SuperSport TV.

"It was probably a closer game than 4-0. We decided in the second half we would play deeper. We invited a few crosses. When you take your chances and don't miss chances and when you prevent your opponent instead of giving the opponent those moments I was speaking out before the game"

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