Ajax can now smell league title – coach

2011-04-30 16:40

Ajax Cape Town coach Foppe De Haan believes his young team can handle the pressure of being at the top of the Absa Premiership until the end of the season.

The Cape side’s 2-1 victory over AmaZulu on Friday temporarily took them to the summit of the log, pending the outcome of the game between Orlando Pirates and SuperSport United that was scheduled to take place last night.

But the Dutchman is confident they can sustain the momentum.

The Urban Warriors showed character when they were forced to come back from a goal down to win the game and keep their hopes of winning the league alive.

After conceding a second-minute goal by Ayanda Dlamini, Ajax replied via Khama Billiat and Clayton Daniels to reach the 59-point mark – their highest since the ­formation of the PSL in the 1997/98 season.

However, De Haan is well aware of the fact that his team needs to score more goals in their remaining two games – against Kaizer Chiefs and Maritzburg United – to have a better goal difference.

“We spent the whole of last month focusing on that department and although we play well in the last third of the field we still don’t put enough balls in the box. Even in our post-mortem we talk about it, but it is not easy,” said De Haan yesterday.

He said Ajax would have to do without midfielder Granwald Scott, who sustained a knee injury in Friday’s game.

“He is definitely out for the remainder of the season through that injury and it is a blow to us. But I think we can handle the ­pressure,” he said.

Ajax were back at training ­yesterday to plot against their next opponents, Chiefs, whom they meet at Peter Mokaba
stadium on ­Saturday afternoon.

De Haan, who is stepping down at the end of the season, said he was working hard to keep his players focused to ensure they do not get ­carried away.

“Two more games and that’s it,” said De Haan.

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