HIGHLANDS Park new coach Gordon Igesund is worried that his team might not pick up a sufficient number of points before the December break, which will put them under pressure in the second round.
The Lions of the North suffered their first league defeat under Igesund on Sunday when they lost 1-0 to Golden Arrows at Makhulong Stadium. Highlands are currently in 14th place in the Absa Premiership table with six points from eight games.
Their next five league games won’t be an easy run, as they have clashes with Bidvest Wits, Mamelodi Sundowns, Bloemfontein Celtic, Orlando Pirates and Ajax Cape Town lined up before the break.
Tomorrow they visit log leaders Wits at Bidvest Stadium (7:30pm).
Igesund said: “There’s a worry, looking at our next games. We have Wits, Sundowns and Pirates – it’s tough, but what makes me feel a bit more positive is the performance against Pirates in the Knockout game. It was much better, we can work with that. We need to lift ourselves up, we’ve got a long season ahead of us, I will do what I have to do going forward.”
The former Bafana Bafana and SuperSport United mentor says his players are still naive when it comes to playing in the top flight, the mentality is not quite right yet.
“I’m looking forward to the first round being finished so I can take the team away on a training camp to get them really tuned in for the second half of the season.
“Fitness levels are not up to scratch, there are a lot of things we need to work on. There’s a long way to go, we want to get on a winning streak.
“First we must understand where the limits are for the players. We will keep working on it,” explained Igesund.
Meanwhile, Arrows coach Clinton Larsen says they won’t get carried away by their victory over Highlands when they meet Sundowns at Loftus Versfeld tomorrow (7:30pm).
He stated: “The next game is against the African champions, the best team on the continent.
“We will stay humble. We will go there to put in the hard work and see where that gets us. I’m sure the boys will give the best performance come Wednesday (tomorrow).”