Sun Sep 24 05:12:23 SAST 2017

Maritzburg coach Davids looks on the bright side after harsh lesson from SuperSport

By Mark Gleeson | 2017-09-10 13:54:55.0

Maritzburg United were given a harsh lesson but their young squad will be the better for the experience said coach Fadlu Davids as he looked on the bright side of defeat in the MTN8 semifinal.

The home team had high hopes of a first-ever cup final appearance but were outplayed by SuperSport United in the second leg at the Harry Gwala Stadium on Saturday night‚ going down 2-0.

“On the one hand it is disappointing but on the other hand they were the better side‚" said Davids in his assessment of the outcome as Maritzburg were beaten 3-1 on aggregate and failed in their bid for a first cup final appearance.

"They deserved to win‚ they were stronger. They used their experience.

“Maybe the occasion was a little too big for four or five of our players and we’ve got to learn.

"It’s a lesson for our younger players‚ to take the occasion and to learn from it and when we’re faced with the same situation again‚ we can handle it a little better.

“SuperSport have an average age of about 27 and they have been in these situations before.

"They know how to handle it‚ they know what is expected in certain situations.

"It’s only a learning curve for our players‚ the experience will help them‚ it will teach them to be able to handle it in a much more professional and better way.”

But the rookie coach felt things might have turned out differently had they taken their opportunities.

“We should have scored those one or two chances.

"We were on the attack‚ they won the ball and we got caught on the counter attack.

"Our control of those situations has to be a bit better and we should not have allowed the ball into the box.

“Once they scored it changed the game.

"We had to chase it‚ we had to go for it and I think the goal that finished the game was the one just before half-time.”

Jeremy Brockie made it 2-0 in the 44th minute after opening the scoring in the 13th minute.

“We should have been a bit more switched on in those critical phases and not concede the goal.

"The second half could have been a different game had we only been 1-0 down at half-time and we might have been able to come back‚” Davids added. - SowetanLIVE