Vukile Mngqibisa - Fact File

Mngqibisa Assures Polokwane Fans Safety This Season

Vukile Mngqibisa has been a key man for Polokwane City this season. Jovi`s shares his experiences about his first season in the PSL.

Personal Information
Full names: Vukile Mngqibisa
Date of birth: 28 November 1987
Place of birth: Katlehong, Gauteng

Nickname: Jovis
Position: Defender

Jersey no: 5

Previous clubs: Yebo Yes (Orlando Pirates development, Jomo Cosmos, Sivutsa Stars)

Club: Polokwane City

Honours: 2012/13 NFD winner-with Polokwane City

Vukile, how would you sum up your first season in the PSL?
I enjoyed my season. I couldn`t have asked for more, but I didn`t fully enjoy it because there were relegation worries. As an individual, I had a great season, especially the fact that we managed to save the status of the club. I scored vital goals for the team and I`m content with my progress so far.

The club struggled and only managed 15th position last season. Why was it such a difficult one for City?
When we started, there were players who thought the PSL was much simpler and similar to the NFD, they thought if we had managed to cope in the NFD, then automatically we`d cope in the PSL. I discovered that in the PSL it`s all about using your mind and that there is less running and use of energy. One of the issues that affected our progress is that the guys wanted to run with the ball instead of letting the ball move. The failure to score goals, especially when playing away games made it impossible for us to catch up. We kept telling ourselves that we had to do better in our next game, but the games were moving by so quickly.

During the course of the season, Duncan Lechesa left as coach and Boebie Solomons took over. What changed in the team?
I can`t say much about what he changed, you know Lechesa is a great coach. It`s just that luck was not on his side. I am who I am because of him and I credit him for a job well done. He called me in when I was at home not playing football. He asked me to come and play. I don`t think coach Solomons changed a lot, he worked more on our minds and technical aspects of the PSL. He brought back the competitiveness in us. I`m saying that because we continued to use the same players we had started the season with.

A lot has been said about Solomons' tactics with regards to parking the bus. What`s your view on that?
I have heard these stories about the bus. That was not his plan or tactic, it happens automatically during the game. Solomons is an attack minded coach. Teams like Kaizer Chiefs play similar style, they wait for their opponent to take the game to them and then catch them on a counter. The only difference was our passing. Our passes are excellent, but the bottom line is we played counter-attacking football. I think it worked for us and it`s never easy to stop doing what is working for you. It`s essential to protect the lead in a game of football.

All players would like to win silverware and possibly even receive a call-up for the national team. With this in mind, have you considered moving to a different club?
I am considering that. I would like to play for a big club one day and perhaps be in position to play for the national team, most of the time when you are playing for a big club, you are more easily noticed. I would definitely love to wear the national team jersey, though. It`s every player`s dream to play for Bafana Bafana.

You are the product of Yebo Yes at Bucs development. It was reported that Bucs want you back. Do you think that suggests that they don`t have faith in their club`s development, as they seem to want their players back only once they have played for another PSL club?
I went there and trained with them. We used to train with Pirates senior team when it was coached by Craig Roslee and Ruud Krol. Williams Okpara once came to me and applauded my game. When you play for a development side, people believe that you only play when facing the senior side. I was never invited to train with the senior side and I then decided to ask  for my clearance. I was fortunate Duncan called immediately and after I received my clearance I had to choose between Thanda Royal Zulu and Lechesa`s offer. I really can`t say if they don`t have faith in their development…maybe I wasn`t lucky.

Rise and Shine City are the only team representing the Limpopo Province in the PSL, so the supporters expect you to do well. Do you have a message for them?
I would like to urge them to come in numbers as they did this past season. They were happy to see Chiefs, Pirates and Sundowns playing at Peter Mokaba Stadium. They were scared that if we were relegated, they would not see elite football anymore. They begged us to fight and save the status of the club because they wanted to see PSL football in the Province. It was emotional at times. They took their hard-earned cash and came to watch us play. We are humbled and I promise them we will stay in the PSL.

All the best, thank you