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Ngcobo players warming the bench at Chiefs.

Upon the start of the current season, it seemed that Kaizer Chiefs would be fielding two players with the surname of Ngcobo in their starting line-up on a regular basis and fans were looking forward to such excitement. For starters, Nkosingiphile Ngcobo was one of the club's standout players last season.

The midfielder was one of several young players who made full use of the club's transfer ban, which meant there were more places up for grabs for some of Chiefs' development players. The 21-year-old made 25 league appearances and scored 4 goals while also creating an assist. Ngcobi also made 11 appearances in the CAF Champions League competition.

It has been disappointing to see him playing just 39 minutes in total this season, making two substitute appearances for Chiefs. Contrary to Bafana coach Hugo Broos' preference for youth, Stuart Baxter has gone with experience in his squad as it has been the 32-year-old Cole Alexander and the 29-year-old Phathutshedzo Nange who have been the preferred options in the middle of the park.

Nkosingiphile’s namesake, Njabulo Ngcobo, has also been a surprising omission since arriving at the club this season from Swallows FC as the current PSL Defender of the Season. The 27-year-old is still yet to play a single minute for his new club, although he was given some game-time off the bench for Bafana in a recent World Cup qualifying win over Ghana.

When he returned to Chiefs, Ngcobo found himself on the bench again for the game against Mamelodi Sundowns. It was fellow new signing Austin Dube, a player without any previous top-flight experience, who got to start against the defending Champions.

The inconsistencies in the selection become all the more confusing when considering that Austine Dube was also part of the Bafana squad in the qualifiers, but did not play. Constantly sitting on the bench can be demoralizing for both players, especially having the back up of their fans.


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Bafana Chiefs Hugo Broos' Kaizer Chiefs Nkosingiphile Ngcobo


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