Giovanni Solinas. Picture: GALLO IMAGES
Giovanni Solinas. Picture: GALLO IMAGES

New Kaizer Chiefs coach Giovanni Solinas is familiarising himself with his surroundings at the club’s Naturena headquarters as he awaits the arrival of his work permit next week‚ Amakhosi communications manager Vina Maphosa said.

Solinas is not expected to be on the bench when Chiefs meet Mamelodi Sundowns in Saturday’s Shell Helix Ultra Cup preseason friendly at FNB Stadium.

Maphosa said the final paperwork for Solinas’s work permit would be submitted to the Department of Home Affairs on Thursday.

"The coach has started doing work on the field with the players. The training sessions have been encouraging to see‚" Maphosa said on Wednesday.

Solinas‚ the 50-year-old Italian former Free State Stars coach announced as Chiefs’ new boss on Friday‚ is expected to watch his new team from the stands in the Shell Helix Cup.

"The issue of the bench is a bit dicey because remember this is a friendly match where you don’t necessarily produce cards to play‚" Maphosa said.

"That will be managed as to how far he can go being involved. But he will be involved somehow in that dressing room. He might be in the stands but he will definitely be involved."

Siphelele Mthembu has joined Cape Town City after walking out on Free State Stars.

Cape Town City confirmed the former Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates player’s signing on Wednesday.

The forward did not attend training for the past two days and Stars general manager Rantsi Mokoena said the player was due to sign a new contract in Bethlehem this week.

This was confirmed by Ea Lla Koto coach Luc Eymael‚ who said he was mystified about the player’s disappearance.

"Yesterday [Monday] and today he did not come to training and he did not speak to me. He phoned the physio saying he had a family issue and he had to go home‚" Eymael said.

"The physio asked him‚ ‘why are you calling me? We have a team manager and a coach’‚ and he said he did not have my number"‚ Eymael said, objecting "because when I was in Belgium [for the close season] I was phoning him.

"He has not responded to my message‚ so what can we do?"

Eymael said he already had a striker replacement in mind‚ but cannot name him as the player is negotiating his release from another club. "We also have [Maboke] Matlakala and [Eleazar] Rodgers‚ so we have some new strikers."