The 49-year-old explained Downs’ team selection criteria with the likes of Vilakazi, Maluleka and Kekana having struggled for game time this term
Mamelodi Sundowns head coach Manqoba Mngqithi says goals from midfield make the Tshwane giants unpredictable.
This comes after Masandawana secured a 3-1 win over Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila (TTM) in a PSL match at Peter Mokaba Stadium on Tuesday night.
Mngqithi was pleased to see Vilakazi find the back of the net and he indicated the experienced midfielder-come-midfielder could keep his place in the matchday squad.
“The goal has opened that space for Vilakazi. It is very encouraging to see Vilakazi coming back with a goal and Rivaldo Coetzee scoring that goal in the dying moments of the first half,” Mngqithi said on The Citizen on Wednesday.
“It is exciting to see our midfielders starting to get the goals because what counts the most is when you have a team that can score goals from different angles because it is very difficult for opponents to tell where the goals are going to come from,” he added.
It was Vilakazi’s first goal of the season with the former Bafana Bafana international struggling for game time this term which has seen him make just four appearances in the PSL.
Mngqithi stated that those who work hard at training will be rewarded with some game time and gave an example of George Maluleka, who made just five starts in the league in the current campaign.
“One thing we do with the coaches that I work with is to reward good performances,” the former Lamontville Golden Arrows head coach explained.
“George Maluleka came on against Al-Hilal and he gave a good performance. He was in the 18-man squad and he got an opportunity to play.”
Sundowns club captain Hlompho Kekana has also found game time hard to come by this season and he is likely to start against Algerian side CR Belouizdad in the Caf Champions League on Friday.
“Unfortunately, the captain [Hlompho Kekana] did not get a chance to play but he also did very well against Al-Hilal,” Mngqithi added.
“But we have got another big one against Belouizdad [on Friday] and we are hoping that some of the players can get a breather so they can help us going forward in the Nedbank Cup.”
Sundowns will take on Orlando Pirates in the Nedbank Cup quarter-finals on April 15.