Benni McCarthy keeps his eye on the prize as AmaZulu march on
It says something that AmaZulu were disappointed to draw against an awe-inspiring Mamelodi Sundowns‚ and then able to maintain their level of intensity to relatively comfortably dispatch of a ninth-placed TS Galaxy 2-1 on Saturday.
Benni McCarthy has said that his team‚ who find themselves in unheard of territory in second place well into the final third of the DStv Premiership season having previously finished highest in seventh‚ are going to aim to keep notching results to keep the pressure on leaders Sundowns‚ and see what happens.
Usuthu did just that in clinical fashion largely overwhelming Owen Da Gama’s off colour Galaxy‚ who slipped to a fourth defeat in succession‚ in a first half where AmaZulu profited from Lehlohonolo Majoro’s brace‚ then consolidating in the second.
It is often difficult to maintain intensity from meetings agianst the glamour teams to mid-table opposition‚ yet AmaZulu‚ with their sixth win in seven games‚ continue to notch results no matter who they are up against.
McCarthy‚ afterwards‚ admitted his enthusiasm at the professionalism with which his players are currently going about their business.
That AmaZulu should have been disappointed to have drawn their previous match‚ also at Kings Park‚ 0-0 against the winning machine that is three-time defending champions Sundowns also speaks volumes of the famous Durban team’s current state of confidence.
“Three more points from us. Ja‚ I’m delighted with the performance‚ the attitude from the players‚ the way we handled ourselves‚” McCarthy said.
“We started the game really well. We didn’t wait to see what the opposition would bring to us.
"Because when we are at home we try and be clinical‚ we try and be direct and we try and take the fight to anybody.
“We were slightly disappointed with our last home game against Mamelodi Sundowns‚ that we didn’t get the three points.
"So we said that today was a game where we had to lift ourselves up.
“The game came three days after Sundowns‚ so this is the perfect way to bounce back.
"With the three points we put some more pressure on everybody else – [third-placed] Lamontville Golden Arrows‚ Sundowns.
"So‚ yeah‚ we just wanted to put the minds right‚ put the mentality right.
"We’ve got two next very difficult games coming up and to get three home points will count in our favour.
“I’m very happy with the overall performance from every player – the starting XI and the ones who came off the bench who made a difference.
“So‚ yeah‚ the game went according to plan – I’m very happy with that performance.”
AmaZulu are away to Cape Town City on Wednesday then meet Arrows in the highest-profile Durban derby in many a year on Saturday.