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Tshabalala one of three positive Covid-19 cases at AmaZulu

Siphiwe Tshabalala of AmaZulu
(Image credit: Backpagepix)

AmaZulu head coach Benni McCarthy has confirmed that three of his players have tested positive for Covid-19 and will miss Sunday’s DStv Premiership clash with Bloemfontein Celtic.

Former Kaizer Chiefs star Siphiwe Tshabalala, midfielder Makhehleni Makaula and left back Sibusiso Mabiliso have tested positive.

''Obviously, it wasn’t the ideal start because we were expected to start on the second [2 January] against Kaizer Chiefs, but we understand the circumstances with Chiefs playing in the Caf Champions League in Africa,' McCarthy told the club’s media office.

'So, the game was postponed which gave us a little bit more time to prepare for Bloemfontein Celtic, get all our ducks in one basket and just work on the technical aspects and how we can build from the great performance we had against Chippa [United].

'A lot of good things came from that game, so we just had to continue from there.

'Unfortunately, we got hit with three players being positive and had to self-isolate and that disrupted. Makaula was one of them who played in the match against Chippa, Mabililso was the second one who had a fantastic game, so we are losing one of our offensive left-back players but we got experience coming back and Shabba [Tshabalala], just for the group, for the atmosphere, for the experience he brings to the group.

'So, when you lose three players like this then you need to rotate the squad and find different solutions.

'But I think everybody has been working hard and everyone is really up for the future, and the future is in two days [Sunday].'

McCarthy picked up his first win as Ushutu boss with the 3-1 victory over Chippa United in their final game of 2020 and he is desperate to start the new year on a positive note.

'Hopefully, we can continue from the good game we had against Chippa. We know it's a different opponent. Celtic is formidable, very tricky, very quick.

'In Bloem, they are very difficult, but to our advantage, they won't have their 12th man with them, because they have great support with fans who get really behind them.'