Komphela: ‘United dictated the result’

2014-12-08 00:00

THE Tuks players were first off the field and down the tunnel after Friday night’s 0-0 draw against Maritzburg United at Harry Gwala Stadium. They were in high spirits, sharing jokes with each other and even breaking into celebratory song at one point.

The reaction of the Maritzburg players a few minutes later was rather different. Doors were punched, profanities were flung and frowns were furious as the Team of Choice made their way to their dressing room with a point to show for their efforts.

The truth is that the result was probably a fair reflection of a match that saw both sides miss out on numerous goal scoring opportunities, but if this Maritzburg side wants to be taken seriously as one of the best in the country then these are the matches that they should be winning.

“That gives you an indication that for us it was two points dropped and for Tuks it was a point gained,” United coach Steve Komphela said of the post-match reactions from the two squads.

The anger was perhaps magnified by the fact that United dominated the first half. Wave after wave of attacks had Tuks on the back foot, and it appeared to be a matter of when and not if the home side would score.

Komphela had chosen the same starting 11 that beat Orlando Pirates just three nights earlier — a decision that he acknowledged may have not worked out as well as planned.

“I thought that if it ain’t broken then why fix it? We were playing a team that was going to come here to defend and the team selected was an attacking team. We only had one holding midfielder and many players in attacking positions. But unfortunately, as much as we had the match in our hands in the first half, we could not get the outcome,” Komphela explained. “The match they played two days ago also took it out of them. They were not as quick on the counter attack and they lost too many balls.”

Komphela bemoaned his side’s lack of composure in front of goal in the first half, saying it was “frustrating” to witness.

“We are the ones who dictated the result. In the first half if we had taken a few of those chances it would be a different story,” he said.

“In the second half we allowed them to get to our level and they could have scored a couple of goals themselves.”

United, who are now fifth on the league table, are at home again this Friday when they take on bottom club AmaZulu in the KZN derby.

That is a match that, according to Komphela, now becomes a must-win.

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