AmaZulu coach Benni McCarthy has confirmed three positive Covid-19 cases in his squad, one of them being Siphiwe Tshabalala. This came just days before their clash against Bloemfontein Celtic on Sunday. McCarthy said Tshabalala, midfielder Makhehleni Makhaula and left-back Sibusiso Mabiliso have tested positive and this resulted in them missing the match at the Dr Molemela Stadium.
AmaZulu were due to play Kaizer Chiefs in their opening DStv Premiership clash of 2021, but that match was postponed due to Amakhosi’s involvement in the CAF Champions League. The postponement gave Amazulu more time to prepare for their match against Bloemfontein Celtic.
McCarthy said this is not an ideal start as they were expected to start on January 2 against Kaizer Chiefs. He said they understand circumstances of Chiefs playing in the CAF Champions League, hence the game was postponed.
“But this gave us more time to prepare for Bloemfontein Celtic, to get all our ducks in the basket and work on our technical aspects and how we can build from the confidence we got from [beating] Chippa United,” said McCarthy.
With PSL teams testing players almost every week and positive cases in the country on a rapid rise, McCarthy said he is positive that his squad can handle absences as Tshabalala, Makaula and Mabiliso self-isolate.
“Unfortunately we got hit with three players testing positive and they had to be self-isolated, which distracted our plans. When you lose three key players in your team, you have to rotate and find solutions. We hope to continue with the form we showed against Chippa when we face Celtic because they are formidable and quick,” he said.