All seemed well at Township Rollers until the club was rocked by internal squabbles last week.
While Popa had a very successful season; winning the league trophy, the Mascom Top 8 and reaching the group stages of the CAF Champions League, the team could lose one of its key players, Lemponye ‘FC’ Tshireletso.
Earlier this week, it was reported that the attacking midfielder had a training bust-up with coach, Nikola Kavazovic, resulting in the former walking out of the training session at the Tlokweng training grounds.
Speaking to Mmegi Sport on Wednesday, Rollers public relations officer, Bafana Pheto confirmed the incident but said the issue has been dealt with internally.
“Indeed there was a misunderstanding between the coach and one of the players.
The player felt that he was ill-treated by the coach; he walked out of the session and he missed three days of training. He however, has since returned to training.
“These things happen at almost every club, where it is even much worse but because it is Rollers it has been all over the media.
It is something that you should expect where there are more than three people, sometimes they disagree on certain issues but the most important thing is that, at the end of the day, they should reach common ground. The issue was dealt with internally by the club,” Pheto said.
FC could be on his way out following in the footsteps of former Rollers assistant coach, Mogomotsi ‘Teenage’ Mpote who was captured by Orapa United after a fall-out
Mpote did not enjoy his stay at Rollers under Kavazovic as the two did not see eye to eye, with the former being sidelined at the club as the Serbian tactician preferred Leutlwetse Tshireletso as his number two.
Following Mpote’s appointment as the new assistant coach, the Ostriches are said to be keeping tabs on Tshireletso and Galabye Moyana whose contracts expire at the end of the month although Rollers has already tabled new offers.
“They (Orapa United) have not written to us. So we know nothing of their interest in the players.
The only way we would know is when they communicate with us as the players are still contracted to us at the moment,” Pheto said.
FC has been one of the key players under Kavazovic although he was deployed in central midfield for majority of the season rather than his preferred left wing role.
Popa has already parted ways with the South African duo of Mthokosizi Msomi and Tshepo Matete.
The two joined Popa at the start of last season, but were deemed surplus to requirements as they had their contracts terminated on Monday. Meanwhile, secretary general Khumoyame Masonya has made a u-turn after resigning at the start of the week.
“We had a meeting with Masonya and he is back as our secretary.
He felt that he had done his part and had to leave but we convinced him to stay,” Pheto said.