Chippa United coach Dan Malesela has hit out at his side's sluggish performance during their 0-2 defeat to Mamelodi Sundowns at Loftus Versfeld Stadium on Sunday, saying his players needed to wake up after a bad game.
The Chilli Boys looked uncharacteristically lethargic and sloppy in possession as Sundowns walked away deserved winners following goals by Lebohang Maboe and Gaston Sirino.
Malesela described the match as "really bad" as Sundowns raced to a 2-0 lead in the first half, and the scoreline could have been more had they been more clinical in front of goal.
“We had a bad start. We looked scared. A lot of the players looked jittery from the beginning, and the results were always going to be what they are now,” Malesela told the media after the game.
“We have to forget about this game, but there are several things that are a concern that I will discuss with the players to get to know what happened. This cannot be the same team that played against Black Leopards [won 3-0] and played against Swallows [drew 1-1] and played against Sundowns.
“I don’t want to say this is fatigue, players were tired or whatever, it could be the physiological factor that the cycle is ending also. But we will find out what is wrong.”
Chippa played all their last seven games on the road, and perhaps that has affected their mindset.
Malesela is relieved now as he will be playing at home for the first time since he took over when they host Free State Stars in the Nedbank Cup last 32 on Sunday. “It will be such a big relief because the travelling was quite taxing. We had to work on the minds of the players every time,” Malesela said.
“We pushed them physiologically for them not to even entertain any form of fatigue. But I’m hoping this is not a case to say we are fatigued and make that an excuse. We just had a bad day in the office, that’s all.”