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South Africa’s Bartlett heaps praise on ‘tactically disciplined’ Katsande

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By Sports Reporter


LEGENDARY former South Africa international Shaun Bartlett has showered Zimbabwean midfielder Willard Katsande with praises describing him as one of the most tactically disciplined players in the South African Absa Premiership.

After enjoying a very successful playing career, Bartlett is now an assistant coach at Kaizer Chiefs where he has had the opportunity to work with the hardworking Zimbabwean midfield enforcer.

While some have suggested Katsande was now past his prime, Bartlett still rates the former Zimbabwe captain as one of the key figures at the South African club.

“Katsande is a leader, he is a core player, he is one of the most experienced players we have in the squad,” said Bartlett as quoted by FARPost.

“Everybody looks at Katsande and the first thing is like the physicality in tackles and everything but for us is more his tactical discipline, how he holds his position, what he gives to us as a team and how he gives cover to the defenders when they go out of position.”

Katsande, who rarely pulls out of a tackle, is one of the most feared midfielders in the Absa Premiership.

He has been a rock in midfield for Chiefs for the past nine years since moving from Ajax Cape Town ahead of the 2011/12 South African domestic season.

Katsande has made over 250 appearances for the club, netting 16 goals and providing 7 assists.

Prior to the suspension of the league due to the coronavirus outbreak in South Africa, the 34-year-old had featured in 20 games for coach Ernst Middendorp’s troops and managed to pitch in with a single assist across all competitions so far.

With the 2019/20 Premier Soccer League (PSL) season currently halted because of the coronavirus pandemic, Chiefs were on course to dethrone reigning PSL champions Mamelodi Sundowns.

The table-toppers have 48 points at the summit from 22 matches and were scheduled to meet Bidvest Wits away from home when the games were indefinitely suspended back in March.