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Kaizer Chiefs have tried to be smart in recruitment - Baxter defends transfer inactivity

19:05 GMT+4 02/02/2022
Stuart Baxter, coach of Kaizer Chiefs.
The Soweto giants did not make any new additions in January and their coach breaks silence

Kaizer Chiefs coach Stuart Baxter says even if they had made mid-season signings, it was not going to reduce the gap between them and Mamelodi Sundowns.

The Amakhosi tactician feels Masandawana “hold all the trump cards” on the transfer market.

This comes as Sundowns signed three players in January, including beating Chiefs to the signature of midfielder Teboho Mokoena.

With the Naturena-based side missing all their transfer targets and emerging from the player movement window empty-handed, Baxter responds to sentiments that they lack ambition.

“I think it’s easy to have these perceptions [no ambition], given what’s going on. So I can’t say I don’t understand what the supporters are feeling,” said Baxter as per iDiski Times.

“I can’t say I don’t understand but I can assure them there’s a lot more [that] goes on in terms of targeting in people, getting knocked back, realising that in the open market there’s one club that holds all the trump cards.

“So if we’re interested in a player they’re interested in, pretty much, the chances are that he’s going there. So we have to be smart then in recruitment and I think we’ve tried to do that and probably what’s been available to us – we worked out that at this moment in time it won’t build that gap between us and Sundowns," he continued.

“So in that respect, I don’t think it’s a lack of ambition but realism hitting home. Now I think we need to keep on working on that. We need to do that for two reasons; one because that’s what an ambitious football club does and two, we have to keep sending signals to supporters that we’re not resting on our laurels or waiting for next year to come around, that we’re active in the market.”

Baxter explains why they wanted to sign Mokoena, the 24-year-old midfielder, who has established himself as a Bafana Bafana regular.

“If you had said to me, would it be nice to get a Teboho Mokoena in, yeah it would have been nice because I believe that our squad is developing and some individuals are developing,” Baxter said.

“But you can always use the injection of a player and that has a price and is he better than what you have etc etc – what do you pay for him, what you’re getting.”

After failing to beef up their squad, Chiefs are now set to resume their Premier Soccer League campaign and they trail log leader Sundowns by 16 points.