Chiefs praised for fighting spirit in draw against Maritzburg

Hunt looks at positives despite winless league run in six games

Neville Khoza Journalist
Lebogang Manyama of Kaizer Chiefs during the DStv Premiership 2020/21 game between Maritzburg United and Kaizer Chiefs at Harry Gwala Stadium in Pietermaritzburg on 10 March 2021.
Lebogang Manyama of Kaizer Chiefs during the DStv Premiership 2020/21 game between Maritzburg United and Kaizer Chiefs at Harry Gwala Stadium in Pietermaritzburg on 10 March 2021.
Image: Steve Haag/BackpagePix

Despite not winning a league match in their last six attempts, Kaizer Chiefs coach Gavin Hunt appeared to have been satisfied with the point his side got during their 1-1 draw against Maritzburg United at Harry Gwala Stadium on Wednesday.

Hunt was pleased with the fighting spirit his side showed after falling behind to an early Thabiso Kutumela strike before Lebogang Manyama rescued a point for Chiefs with a late equaliser.

That result left Amakhosi without a victory in the DStv Premiership since January 19 when they thumped Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila 3-0.

“The first half we gave the ball away like it was simple, especially on our left-hand side. You don’t expect it at this level, so we have to be better,” Hunt told SuperSport TV after the match.

“Then the turnover comes, then they are at you. We were playing opposite to the ball in terms of balls coming forward. So they got the goal and the lifeline, and I thought we started well in the first 10 minutes. We played through the lines a little bit better. But we got to try and play football. Our team can’t play if you go directly, with the team that we had.

“So second half we changed it and we were a totally different side. They [Maritzburg] hit the crossbar, to be fair, but we came back with good spirit from the players, good attitude and desire. That’s the most important thing.

“And then we showed that. I’m happy that they got the rewards because that’s all we can do.”

Chiefs did manage a 2-0 win in the CAF Champions League against Petro de Luanda last week, but Hunt feels the Premier Soccer League (PSL) and the continental competition are very different.

“I get criticised because I think the Champions League is much slower than here in the PSL. It is 100 miles an hour. You got to make sure of the passing, when to play and when not to play. We played into the press the whole night, and sometimes you get to play over the press and through the press.”

Meanwhile, Maritzburg coach Ernst Middendorp was disappointed with the results as he felt they should have won the match had they converted their chances.

“It is something where I’m not happy about it. Picking up a valuable one [point] again is OK,” Middendorp told the club's media department.

“But good, we should have scored the second goal. I think it is the crucial point and, of course, we can discuss the double offside when Kaizer Chiefs scored.”

Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

X