The Amakhosi coach gives an assessment of how his team has performed so far in two big games ahead of their PSL opener on Sunday.
Kaizer Chiefs head coach Stuart Baxter says his side’s “seeds have started to give some sprouts” but they are still far from the competitive level he wants them to be.
Since his return to Chiefs in June, Baxter began his second tenure on the bench in Amakhosi’s Caf Champions League final against Al Ahly.
He was also in charge of the Carling Black Label Cup encounter against Orlando Pirates as well as last weekend’s MTN8 quarter-final defeat by Mamelodi Sundowns.
On Sunday, he will guide Chiefs in their trip to Mbombela Stadium to take on TS Galaxy in a Premier Soccer League fixture and the Brit analyses the state of his squad so far.
“Again, I think there’s been more than I really thought we would get. Because at times against Pirates, in the first half a bit, but mostly in the second half, our movement around the box was better, our possession was better,” said Baxter as per Sowetan Live.
“Not only on transitions but also in longer ones [build-ups] where we’ve got to pick our way through a bit. I thought against Sundowns we started poorly. I don’t think anybody was up to scratch.
“But then suddenly we kicked in and got back from 2-0 down — against Sundowns, and under a lot of pressure. We could have folded — so that was pleasing.
“So I wouldn’t say we’re anywhere near where I want to be, but I would say that … let’s say the seeds have started to give some sprouts, I’ve not seen them in beautiful trees yet.”
After Chiefs’ Fifa transfer ban expired, Baxter came on to make nine signings.
The coach says he has not been surprised by how his side has so far performed in this rebuilding phase.
“Not really [surprised by his squad]. I think we’ve only really worked with this group since after the [Champions League] final,” Baxter added
“So I think the players are further on than I thought they would be. And we’ll keep on pushing, of course. But this is not instant coffee, you know — we’ve got to make it.”
Sunday’s match will be Baxter’s first PSL match in charge of Chiefs since leading them to a 2-0 win over Chippa United in May 2015 to be crowned league champions.