The former Jomo Cosmos, Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates player, who joined Stars less than a week ago after almost 10 years with the AmaTuks, successfully engineered a win on his debut whereas his counterpart, Kenny Ndlazi suffered a defeat in his first match in charge of Mpumalanga Black Aces.
A first-half strike by 25-year-old Russel Khuzwayo, who started in 18 matches last season, was sufficient for Stars to pick up only their second win of the current campaign, which lifted them six points clear of relegation threatened Western Province United.
Khuzwayo’s goal was only the club’s 10th in eleven games but what must be pleasing from Troughton’s point of view is that his defence, which has conceded 16 goals, at last stood firm.
“It was a bit of a struggle and we were a little way off the pace but my team fought hard,” says Troughton.
“There were things we had to prioritise after only one win this season. We kept a clean sheet and now need to concentrate on our next match, which is against Western Province.
“It is going to be tough; there is still a lot of work to be done but next season I need four or five players to boost the 17-man squad. I’m just trying to give my players a little bit of organisation, and get them more enthusiastic.”
At the Seshego Stadium, a vastly improving Winners Park destroyed any hopes Ndlazi had of immediately turning Black Aces’ fortunes around when Christian Ombola-A-Nianguengue netted the winner in the 29th minute of this Inland Stream game.
Park are now just a point behind second-placed Dynamos, while Aces remain in the doldrums – a mere three points from the drop zone, and the pressure is already mounting on the ex-Ga-Rankuwa United man.