Sport / Phakaaathi / Local Soccer

Sibongiseni Gumbi
Football Writer
3 minute read
18 Oct 2021
10:33 am

Kaizer Chiefs coach Baxter heaps praise on Dolly

Sibongiseni Gumbi

"He has worked hard," said the Amakhosi mentor.

Keegan Dolly celebrates goal during the DStv Premiership 2021/22 match between Kaizer Chiefs and Chippa United on Saturday. (Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix)

Kaizer Chiefs coach Stuart Baxter says Keagan Dolly’s drive is what is most admirable about the Amakhosi star who scored a brace in their 4-0 demolition of Chippa United at the weekend. 

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Dolly was in his element and helped Chiefs to the win which eased pressure on Amakhosi, who had not won in their last four games. His effortless combination with Khama Billiat was a marvel to watch at FNB Stadium on Saturday. 

“He’s worked hard,” said Baxter when asked about the progress the midfielder has made since joining the club in June. 

When images of an overweight Dolly made rounds after he had signed, there was some worry that he could take a long time before getting into match fitness. But eight games in, he looks in great shape. 

“I can’t claim responsibility for it, I think the coach has to give inspiration, and the player has to have the motivation. He hadn’t played for so long, and I’m sure you’d understand that when you’re out of the team and not part of the setup and you’re not playing you lose your motivation and maybe a little bit of that drive that keeps you in top shape.

“By the time he came to us, he was indeed a few kilos overweight and needed to work on that. I didn’t want to shove him in (but I could have ) because the touch doesn’t go, the vision doesn’t go, the left foot doesn’t go… so you’re tempted to just throw him in.

“We managed him pretty closely to where he is today, and he’s now in good shape and enjoying his football,” added the mentor. 

Dolly told SuperSport TV that while he was the star of the show, it was a good performance from the entire team and that made it easy for them to collect only their second full set of points of the season. 

“I should first give credit to the entire team, the boys have been fighting hard at training sessions, and in the past few games, we created many chances that we couldn’t convert. 

“I have said in my past interviews that once we start scoring it is not going to stop, and we saw that tonight. But the most important thing is that the whole team played well. We stuck to our game plan and we executed it well, and we got the three points. 

“We have been creating chances and it is not just me, the whole team did well and I think if we keep going like this a lot of teams need to watch out.”

On his combination with Billiat, he said: “It is always easy for me to understand where Khama is going to be and for him to know where to run when I have the ball. It is a combination that started in our days at Ajax.

“But overall it is the entire team. We have been working hard at training… we deserve this (win) and hopefully, there is much more to come.”