As Highlands Park turned up the heat in the middle of the first half, it looked as if Kaizer Chiefs would once more fall on the wrong side of the result, as they struggled to contained their spirited opponents.
The Glamour Boys had a dream start to their opening game of the 2019/20 Premier Soccer League (PSL) season, as Lebohang Manyama got them on the scoresheet early after heading a cross from Kearyn Baccus.
That goal, however, only sparked the hosts into life, as they sent wave after wave of attack to the Chiefs’ half, with goalkeeper Bruce Bvuma doing most of the playing for the visiting side.
The Lions of the North were eventually rewarded for their tenacity, with Rodney Ramagalela finding the net in his first match for the club.
The rest of the half was one-way traffic, as the men in red dominated proceedings, but without adding to their goal tally any further.
Highlands Park began the second half as they ended the previous one, and were immediately on the money after Peter Shalulile netted from close range.
For an all-too-brief period, it looked as if the Soweto giant’s fortunes had not changed, but they would equalise a minute later, with Lebohang Manyama bagging his second.
Chiefs would eventually clinch the encounter with seven minutes on the clock, thanks to a goal from an unlikely source in Eric Mathoho.
Following the match, coach Ernst Middendorp noted an improvement in attitude, which saw his charges overcome a difficult first half to pull a win out of the bag.
“There’s no doubt about it. A fully deserved win for Kaizer Chiefs, with the right mentality,” Middendorp told Supersport in his post-match interview.
“Also with the right competitive attitude going into it, corrected what is necessary. And we have done it.
“We had other opportunities to score more goals, and I think it was okay.”
Refreshed squad does the business for Chiefs
For all three Kaizer Chiefs goals, it was men who were not involved for a good chunk of their horrid campaign, who made the telling contributions.
Both goal scorers, Manyama and Mathoho, battled injury throughout the season, while assists were provided by club debutants, Baccus and Samir Nurkovic.
The German tactician praised his refreshed squad, while noting that a slow start was to be expected, with the bulk of his charges still adapting.
“It is totally normal at this stage with us,” he added.
The victory was Chiefs’ first league win since April. They next host Black Leopards at Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday.
Source link : https://www.thesouthafrican.com/sport/soccer/psl-south-africa/middendorp-credits-teams-attitude-for-deserved-victory/
Publish date : 2019-08-04 16:00:26