Tembo deals with injury woes

Central midfielder Furman and striker Bradley Grobler recently had respective shoulder and groin operations, with the latter likewise set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

Both men were expected to feature for Bafana Bafana in the 2019 African Nations Cup qualifier with Nigeria at FNB Stadium on November 17, with Furman cruelly denied what would have been a 50th cap against the Super Eagles

Matsatsantsa forwards Fagrie Lakay and Thabo Mnyamane are also nursing knocks, although fellow hitman Evans Rusike has just shaken off a complaint.

Lakay, who was loaned to Ajax Cape Town last term, was starting to peak for the club but suffered an injury in the MTN8 final defeat to Cape Town City in September at Durban's Moses Mabhida Stadium.

Mnyamane, who scored in the previous year's MTN8 final, has only played twice this campaign in August.

Tembo feels Furman's and Grobler's absence in particular was felt in their 1-0 loss to Kaizer Chiefs in the Telkom Knockout quarter-finals over the weekend.

"Obviously those are our big players. Dean Furman is our captain and he just had a shoulder operation. He will be out for two to three months," Tembo said.

"Probably he won't be able to play until the end of the season. And also Bradley, the groin operation, it could be the same as last season but we just hope that he might recover a bit early.

"But the positive is that Evans Rusike was out for seven weeks and on Sunday was his first 45 minutes, so that's positive.

"We also have Fagrie who hasn't played since the final, he got injured. Thabo Mnyamane, who this season has only played 10 minutes and that was the first leg of the MTN8 against Chiefs, he is also injured.

"So, we are are little bit thin but we have to give confidence and belief to the rest of the team. We signed the rest of the players for a purpose and we knew they'll play a few games when others are not around. The only way to show confidence in them is by playing them, supporting them."