Poor defending leaves Middendorp 'irritated'

Maritzburg coach bemoans another late winner for opposition

Ernst Middendorp, coach of Maritzburg United.
Ernst Middendorp, coach of Maritzburg United.
Image: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

To say that Maritzburg United coach Ernst Middendorp is furious with his team’s defence is an understatement.

The Team of Choice conceded late goals in stoppage time in the 1-2 defeats against SuperSport United and Royal AM.

Middendorp, 62, lost it when they allowed Royal AM a smash and grab deep into stoppage time at the weekend.

Royal defender Mbhazima Rikhotso scored the winner four minutes into stoppage time to seal a 2-1 victory for his side.

Zukile Kewuti scored in the 85th minute to cancel out Victor Letsoalo’s opener after 71 minutes and the Team of Choice were on course to take a point in the KwaZulu-Natal derby. 

“You can say whatever you want, but we conceded in the last minute again. We conceded in stoppage time from a free-kick. I am not disappointed; I am irritated about what is happening. It is not funny anymore, and I do not understand this,” said a visibly angry Middendorp.

Middendorp is not the one to shy away from voicing his opinion and he will give his players a piece of his mind during the Fifa international break.

The Team of Choice won two matches, lost four, and are in 11th place with six points from six games. After the two-week break, they will play against Orlando Pirates at the Harry Gwala Stadium.

There is no guessing which area of the team the German tactician will work on during the break after they conceded eight goals in their opening six matches. “We are playing well and threatening the opposition with nice build-ups.

"However, the defence is a cause for concern. They [Royal] had two shots on target and won the game because we could not concentrate for the whole game. You cannot lose a game like that. It is a little bit irritating from my side. I am not happy about this,” added Middendorp.

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