Juniors can wait, says Akbay

BULAWAYO - Highlanders coach Erol Akbay says he will not rush to include the club’s newly-graduated Under-20 players into first team action as the 2016 season beckons.

Most Bosso fans were impressed by the performances of the club’s junior players during a pre-season friendly against newly-promoted side Bulawayo City.

The likes of Prince Dube, Adrian Silla and Percy Sibanda were all outstanding in the win over the council-owned side.

However, in the ZNA Charities Shield quarter-final win over city rivals Chicken Inn on Sunday only Dube came on as a second half substitute to the disappointment of the Bosso faithful.

Highlanders put in a laboured performance and needing penalties to win the tie and the fans felt the youngsters could have given energy to the team.

But Akbay does not want to expose the trio to first team football early on as they will suffer from burn-out.

“The youngsters cannot as of now start directly in the first eleven. The youngsters will have to wait for a good time and they have to know how we want to play our game and every day they can learn,” he said.

“They are mastering my philosophy a little bit, but we are trying to make sure that they adapt to it.”

The Dutch mentor further said he was still working on shaping the team into what he wants it to be.

“We are still trying; we are still looking at how best we want to play. With two weeks only, they cannot play the way I want,” he said.

“They are still adjusting, so in other words we are still looking for what is best for our team. So far, the performance since I joined the club has not changed what we have to change is how I want football to be played which is more important.”

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