“I am so proud of this young man here, who in my view was the star of the game. He fought, he is 19 years old, and I am saying to the Premier Soccer League (PSL) teams that here is talent, tap into this talent, and protect it going forward,” he said.
Although the Ke Yona Team lost 1-0 to reigning Nedbank Cup champions SuperSport United, Bongani Mbuli was voted man of the match as he held a solid partnership with fellow centre-back Thulani Motloung, and Mangena was full of praises for the defender from Ermelo, Mpumalanga.
“I think it is always a problem when you concede early, we knew coming into this game that they were going to punish us via set pieces, so we worked on set pieces.
“But the most unfortunate part is that our players were so scared, and we kept on telling them that you know what, settle should settle down, do not give them the respect that you are giving them … but it did unsettle us a bit, the boys showed character,” said Mangena.
“They came back after they conceded, and they fought throughout and we also had to understand where we are coming from. This is a team that we got in patches, they would come for five days and we would work with them, and come back again after a month, work with them for five days … but SuperSport are a team that play and train week-in and week-out.”
The 18-man squad will be drafted in the 16 PSL teams on Monday.