Jonty Mark

By Jonty Mark

Football Editor

Motaung Jnr – Chiefs’ players wanted to pay tribute to fallen soldier Fleurs

'At a time like this you ask how the players are feeling and they said they wanted to train,' said the Chiefs sporting director.

Kaizer Chiefs sporting director Kaizer Motaung Jnr has spoken of how Amakhosi’s players wanted to train the day the news broke of the killing of teammate Luke Fleurs, to pay tribute to their fallen brother.

Fleurs was killed in a hijacking in Johannesburg on Wednesday night, and Chiefs’ players and staff all gathered at the Chiefs Village in Naturena the following day.

“We had a moment with all the staff,” Motaung Jnr told Thabiso Mosia on Radio 2000.

“The academy staff and the first team staff gathered at a special central point we have at the Village. The players had a moment to be together and speak among each other. Having to face each other, knowing that one of their soldiers, their brothers, that they were expecting to see in the morning, that he was not there, it was very tough.”

“There was an internal discussion and the boys went out on the field in memory of Luke.”

Motaung Jnr confirmed that the players were given the option of not training.

“At a time like this you ask how the players are feeling and they said they wanted to train, they were grateful for the opportunity Luke doesn’t have today. They lifted their heads and said they want to be on the field in his memory.

“They wanted to be on the field and to work for him. They are the ones who raised their hands and said they want to go to training.”

Chiefs are also set to take the field on Saturday for their DStv Premiership clash with Chippa United at the Buffalo City Stadium in East London.

Amakhosi had the option of requesting a postponement of the match, which would surely have been granted by the Premier Soccer League. But Chiefs spokesperson Vina Maphosa confirmed on Friday that the team had departed for East London.

It is likely to be an emotional occasion, with a moment’s silence for Fleurs to be held at all DStv Premiership, Motsepe Foundation Championship and DStv Diski Challenge games this weekend.

‘He was very close’

Motaung Jnr also said that Fleurs was in line to be a part of the squad that went to East London to play Chippa. At the time of his murder, the 24 year old had yet to make his Chiefs debut.

“He was very close (to his debut), I think if I am not mistaken he was in the plans for this week’s game,” added Motaung Jnr.

“The technical staff were mulling over the direction they were taking. Luke has been … a supreme professional. He dreamed of donning the gold and black jersey and showing what he can do. He was never late for training, and was always disciplined, whether he was in the team or on the bench, he was always supporting his teammates.”