Last year
Roger de Sa was unveiled as Maritzburg United head coach by chairman Farook Kododia (left) at Harry Gwala Stadium yesterday. Photo by Jabulani Langa  ~ 

NEWLY appointed Maritzburg United head coach Roger de Sa has targeted 30 points in his quest to help the ailing KwaZulu-Natal outfit survive the dreaded axe.

And De Sa, who signed a six-month contract with a two-year option, reckons getting to the “Magic 30” would make his job a little easier.

Maritzburg are currently in eighth place in the table with 19 points.

The ex-Ajax Cape Town coach was unveiled at the Harry Gwala Stadium by an excited chairman Farook Kadodia yesterday.

The 52-year-old coach born in Maputo, Mozambique, admits joining the Team of Choice halfway through the season gives him ample time to create order out of the chaos left in the wake of Ernst Middendorp’s departure.

“The next four weeks will be crucial for me,” De Sa said in reference to upcoming PSL games against Polokwane City, Kaizer Chiefs, SuperSport United and Free State Stars.

“I am happy I’m here! And I know what is expected of me, I’m not blind. I had a month or so to think things through before I made my decision.

“The first target is to make sure we get to 30 points and stay in contention for a top eight finish. If we reach 30 points it would be easy to extend it to 40 points to end the season. To achieve that we have to be consistent.

“We wouldn’t want to be in the situation we found ourselves in last season, where we survived relegation in our last match. It is good that we ended the first round in a good position.”

He appreciated the work done by acting coaches, Fadlu Davids and his brother Maahier, who kept the team afloat.

Kadodia was all smiles after finally reeling in one of the biggest fish in the sea: “I’ve always admired Roger. I’ve been trying to lure him for 10 years, but he was always with other teams. His achievements speak volumes. At Bidvest Wits he won the Nedbank Cup and at Orlando Pirates he played in the final of the Caf Champions League. Last season with Ajax he won the MTN8.”

De Sa dismissed rumours linking him to the Bafana Bafana job: “Safa has never contacted me. All I know is what I read in newspapers. My decision to join Maritzburg was not delayed by that.

“Farook contacted me when I left Ajax and I told him I needed a break, I would only return to football in January. He understood and here I am.”

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