Shape up or ship out, Birds coach Malvin Khumalo warns his players

The Birds team is under attack from coach Malvin Khumalo.

Lacklustre performances and absenteeism in the Bluebirds camp have infuriated coach Malvin Khumalo, prompting him to read the riot act to his under-achieving squad.

Khumalo called a special indaba for all the players and members of the technical staff to address and discuss what he termed ‘a lacklustre performance and constant absenteeism from camp and training sessions by players who frequently go awol [absent without official leave]’.

The Birds team is under attack from coach Malvin Khumalo.

Absent from the indaba session and understandably so were those players currently doing matric in various schools and those living outside of Alex. Only 11 players showed up and absent was promising young keeper Siphesihle Madala, who has not been seen anywhere near the team since late last year.

Khumalo said he would chastise those living outside Alex at a separate indaba before the end of the week, some of whom include the likes of Lerato ‘Fabulous Gem’ Williams and other talented stars Lerato Makhanya, Noxolo ‘Zongo’ Gcina, and Deveney Rhoda.

Read: Prodigal girl of Alex football leaves the wilderness for the Birds nest

At the meeting, Khumalo reminded the players about the goals, objectives and vision of the team, and their role in that vision and also highlighted the implications of below par performances.

“I literally told them to shape up or ship out and our match against TUT Ladies [Tshwane University of Technology] will determine those players we’re going to fling out of the window as transfer listed material,” he said.

“I will be handing out warning forms to the guilty parties after the TUT game. We cannot tolerate mediocre performances anymore as we have invested heavily in them. Our investment in them makes it incumbent that they too come to the party.”

Recent Birds returnee Zingawe Phakathi.

Khumalo warned that its either the players perform or they go. “It’s as simple as that. We have to adhere to the standards we set out for ourselves, and we owe it to ourselves to maintain those standards.”

Team captain Vangile ‘Nyatama’ Mnguni was not spared the whip either. “I am disappointed with the form of players such as the captain herself, Nyatama, Tshwarelo [Digaota], and Asa [Rabalao]. I hope to see a different Bluebirds side against TUT,” Khumalo said.

Do you think the coach is justified in taking a firm stand against mediocre performances by some of his players and why? Tweet @AlexNewsZA to share your views.

Sipho Siso

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