Da Gama stands by Rae after rare error

Highlands Park head coach Owen Da Gama.
Highlands Park head coach Owen Da Gama.
Image: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Highlands Park coach Owen da Gama stood by his defender Ryan Rae following his mistake, which led to a loss against Mamelodi Sundowns on Saturday.

Rae missed a cross-field pass that allowed Keletso Makgalwa to score the only goal in the Nedbank Cup quarterfinal at Makhulong Stadium.

Recently, Bidvest Wits coach Gavin Hunt and Black Leopards' Alan Clark could not hide their frustrations and took swipes at their players following their mistakes.

But Da Gama defended his defender, who had come on as a substitute, replacing the injured Bevan Fransman in the second half.

"Ryan is really hurting. It was an unfortunate situation, I feel for him," Da Gama said.

"We are with him, we feel it with Sello Motsepe, who lost the ball in the midfield.

"I don't think there is any player who goes onto the field to make a mistake. We will regroup, we will work hard and we will learn from that."

Da Gama said he felt his side deserved something out of the match.

"I thought the boys were fantastic. From a tactical perspective, to see a team like Sundowns park the bus was a bit strange to see," he said.

"For us to put a performance like this, it was very good for the boys and I'm really proud of them."

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