Reneilwe Letsholonyane of Supersport United evades a tackle from Willard Katsande of Kaizer Chiefs during the Absa Premiership match between Supersport United and Kaizer Chiefs on 29 April 2017 at Mbombela Stadium ©Sydney Mahlangu /BackpagePix
Tuesday Jun 27, 2017. 13:30
Just after leaving Kaizer Chiefs at the end of the 2015/16 Premier Soccer League season and joining SuperSport United, midfielder Reneilwe Letsholonyane thought his best playing days might be behind him but coach Stuart Baxter believed in him.
'Yeye' was key for the Soweto giants having spent eight seasons at the club, winning a number of trophies at Naturena before departing for SuperSport
His departure led some in football circles arguing that he had reached his best on the field of play.
However, after commanding a regular place at United under his former Chiefs mentor in Baxter, the former Jomo Cosmos player helped the Tshwane side to a successful Nedbank Cup defence last weekend.
United defeated Orlando Pirates 4-1 in the final at Moses Mabhida Stadium and are currently campaigning in the group stages of the CAF Confederation Cup.
"When I first came to SuperSport, I said I wanted to win stuff, I wanted to contribute to the team's success and in saying that, I'm not someone who's stressed about the age, about the performance or anything," said Letsholonyane to Kick-Off.com.
"I knew that I'm still capable of competing at a high level and I knew that I still have a few years to run in my legs.
“So for me it's a plus having a coach that believed in you irrespective of your age but believed in your talent, in your craft - so Stuart Baxter was one coach that believed in me and I took an opportunity to join SuperSport United.
"Maybe from outside you saw them as poor, but I can say what made us have the advantage is we have been playing competitive football.
"We have been playing CAF Confederation Cup week-in and week-out. We played one of the biggest teams on the continent in TP Mazembe three days before the final and Pirates have over the month just been training without competitive games, so it showed out there."
United will now turn their focus to Guinea side Horoya AC in their fifth Group D CAF Confed Cup match in Conakry on Saturday, 01 July.