February 27, 2021

Kaizer Chiefs coach Middendorp rues missed chances in Mamelodi Sundowns loss

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The Amakhosi manager was not happy with his side’s decision-making in the final third as they lost to Masandawana

Ernst Middendorp has lamented Kaizer Chiefs‘ poor finishing as they lost 1-0 in Thursday’s top-of-the-table clash against Mamelodi Sundowns in the Premier Soccer League at Orlando Stadium on Thursday.

Despite the defeat, Amakhosi are now deadlocked with Masandawana at the top of the table with 53 points, although they lead the way on goal difference.

A first-half goal through Gaston Sirino ensured the reigning league champions avenged the 2-0 loss they suffered at Loftus Versfeld Stadium in the reverse fixture.

“Before we conceded to zero one, we had two clear cut chances against [goalkeeper Kennedy Mweene], we didn’t make and we didn’t take it…good, then we got again in a counter-attack,” Middendorp told SuperSport TV. “We changed the formation, the set-up and we bring in players, I think the second half it was 80-20 ball possession in their half.

“We were consistently in their half, one mistake, one counter on the side through [Lebohang Maboe],” he added. “Good, we had possibilities and I think in the last and second last minute it was just a tap in, easy header and it [could have been] 1-1.”

The Glamour Boys will now turn their attention to Bidvest Wits, who they meet on Sunday afternoon at FNB Stadium, and Middendorp has acknowledged that there are no easy games in the league.

“It doesn’t matter if you play Baroka, Bidvest Wits, or Chippa United, or if you play Black Leopards….it’s not an easy task,” he added. “There is no [easy] game and we have seen that in the past. Good, it should not have happened today but we know why.”

In addition, the Soweto giants have been struggling for positive results since the 2019/20 PSL season resumed after the games were suspended because of the lockdown in March.

Chiefs have succumbed to two defeats against Bloemfontein Celtic and Sundowns plus draws against the Clever Boys as well as Stellenbosch.

Having missed key players in the form of Samir Nurkovic and Leonardo Castro, Middendorp made various attempts to change the game by introducing strikers such as Khama Billiat and Bernard Parker, as well as creative players like Dumisani Zuma.

However, the Tshwane giants resorted to defending as they sat in their own half, allowing goalkeeper Mweene to collect every ball that was launched into the penalty area.