BY FORTUNE MBELE
WARRIORS striker Knox Mutizwa is enduring the frustrations of a goal drought having failed to find the net so far this season in the South African topflight where he plays for Lamontville Golden Arrows.
Mutizwa capped a fine performance last year in the Absa Premier Soccer League, scoring 11 goals and was in contention for the Golden Boot award to the last day until it was eventually nicked by Orlando Pirates striker Gabadinho Mhango.
Mhango ended the season with 16 goals.
Mutizwa is struggling to break into the starting line-up often coming on as a late substitute under coach Mandla Ncikazi who was elevated to head the Abafana Besthende technical department following the departure of Steve Komphela who joined champions Mamelodi Sundowns.
He has attributed his dry spell to the few minutes that he is being afforded in matches.
Mutizwa recently opened up on his frustrations to football magazine KickOff.
“You know every time you get a chance to play, you want to score. As for me as you can see, I have made seven appearances, but I’ve been coming on as a substitute, 10 minutes to go, 20 minutes to go, you see. I haven’t got a chance to start a game or to play,” Mutizwa said.
“If I’m coming in as a sub, it’s either we are defending our lead or we trying to get an equaliser, you see. But I trust I will score, we’ve only played seven games and we are going to play another 23 games. But I can see the guys are scoring and it’s good.”
The former Highlanders striker told the South African publication it was frustrating failing to find the net as a striker in as many matches as he has played so far.
“It’s frustrating. Everyone would be asking ‘What’s going on? What’s changed?’ And if you are not clever, you’ll want to overdo things. It’s frustrating to go seven games without getting a goal. I know this situation, like I’m in it right now. I know how stressful and frustrating it is,” he said.
Jokingly he says: “Unlucky for me, we got like three penalties, but I was on the bench, so I couldn’t take any penalty. If you check this season, I started only one game. But you know coaches — they select strikers based on who is scoring, who is on form because a striker’s job is to score.”
Mutizwa started at the weekend in the 1-0 win over Chippa United at the Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium, his seventh game in Golden Arrows’ nine outings but did not play a full game.
He is listed among a number of top strikers in the DStv Premiership who are yet to score and that includes compatriot Evans Rusike who plays for SuperSport United.
Mutizwa was not part of the Warriors squad that played Algeria in back-to-back Group G Africa Cup of Nations qualifier matches last November.
At the end of last season, Mutizwa said he was eyeing a European move, but at this rate he may not realise that dream.