Fadlu Davids has a vote of confidence from a number of people, who feel he should be installed as the Premier Soccer League’s Coach-of-the-Season after guiding Maritzburg United to a record fourth place in the Absa Premiership and their first final appearance in the Nedbank Cup.
United play Free State Stars in the cup final at Cape Town Stadium on Saturday evening, and if the Team of Choice win it, those calls are only likely to get louder.
Even Pitso Mosimane, who has guided Mamelodi Sundowns to their eighth Premiership title, has said he would not be bitter if the award were to be given to Davids, whom he has great respect for.
But the 37-year-old Davids remains unassuming and ducks all compliments, instead directing them towards the entire team.
“Fighting for a top three place with Kaizer Chiefs, that’s abnormal … so Maritzburg United, the players, the board and the chairman can really be proud of the season. It has been phenomenal.
“Another major factor is the supporters, it’s absolutely fantastic what we have here – it’s something special which we have created here,” he said after the 1-1 draw against provincial rivals Golden Arrows in their last league match on Saturday.
Born and bred in Cape Town, Davids and some members of his team were touring some of the famous and historical places in the Mother City yesterday as part of the build-up to Saturday’s Ke Yona final.
The team received a warm welcome in the Mother City and with Davids and Bevan Fransman being sons of the Cape themselves, seem to have won a few fans who will get behind them at the weekend.
But Davids still believes the odds are stacked against his team in the final.
“We are definitely not favourites. Free State Stars have been in finals before and they have more experience in their squad, players with pedigree in cup finals,” he said.
If Maritzburg win on Saturday, Davids will become the youngest coach to win a trophy in the PSL.