I didn’t think twice about joining Chiefs – Manyama

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  • Post published:June 4, 2020

Kaizer Chiefs midfielder Lebogang Manyama has revealed that the pressure of playing for a big club in front of packed crowds drew him to sign for the Glamour Boys upon his return from Turkey.

The winger left Cape Town City after winning the 2016-17 Player of the Year award and joined Turkish Super Lig side Konyaspor.

However, after an unsettled brief stint abroad Manyama returned to South Africa in August 2018 and signed for the Soweto giants, despite his former club keen to re-sign him.

His Chiefs career then stalled after he picked up some niggling injuries before a car accident ruled him out for most of the campaign.

But, the forward has fought back from his tough start to become one of the Chiefs’ standout performers as they look to bring back silverware to Naturena.

Speaking to Times Live, Manayam opened up on his recovery as well as the motivation behind signing for Chiefs.

‘I had to try and catch up [having arrived after pre-season last term] which is not easy at a club like Chiefs,’ said Manyama.

‘Unfortunately I had an accident last season‚ and then I got a bad injury and stayed out again. In between those injuries you could see that I really wanted to help the club‚ but unfortunately things turned out the way they were.

‘I knew my time would come [at Chiefs] and I kept my positivity‚ always hoping that I would eventually get my chance to play and prove myself.

‘But most importantly it was a matter of being patient and making sure of being 100% instead of trying to push myself and force because things were not going my way.

‘Look‚ I could have chosen to go to my previous club [Cape Town City] as I had a very good relationship with the club there before I went to Turkey,’ Manyama continued.

‘I’m sure they would have taken me with open arms at City but I thought to myself Chiefs was similar to the platform I experienced in Turkey.

‘It’s a team that had pressure and you have to put pressure on yourself also‚ and see how far you’ve learned.

‘In Turkey there were packed stadiums week in and week out‚ and I thought to myself‚ “Wow‚ if I had to join any team there’s no better one than Chiefs.”

‘I thought to myself‚ “I’m going to do this”, and also I grew up a Chiefs supporter‚ and it was just unfortunate that I haven’t been here yet‚ but it’s always been in my mind that one day I will. When the opportunity came I didn’t even think twice.

‘It’s always lovely to play in front of huge support and I think it’s a kind of pressure that I was looking for. And, ja‚ it’s turning out very well,’ he concluded.