Middendorp confident results will come for United

2010-12-22 00:00

DESPITE what appears to be an almost desperate league position and lack of points, Maritzburg United coach Ernst Middendorp remains confident that with the brand of football his side are playing, eventually the results must come.

United play their final league game of 2010 against Wits University at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit tonight, and would welcome a Christmas present of a victory with complete relish as a confidence boost going into the three-week mid-season recess.

It seems an unlikely prospect, given that Roger de Sa’s well organised, eighth-placed Wits have gone unbeaten at home all season, winning three games and drawing two.

But United will take hope from a performance, if not the near-disastrous result of a 2-0 defeat, where the PMB team produced one of their best attacking performances of the season in the first half, but just could not profit from a host of clear-cut chances.

Middendorp readily admitted that seven points from 11 matches, and a 14th position in the league, is an appalling situation for United to be in as the halfway mark approaches.

“It’s a disaster, no doubt about it,” he said yesterday.

But the former Kaizer Chiefs and Arminia Bielefeld coach believes United’s approach in the football they have displayed has been right, and with patience the results will come.

“It’s a disaster because of the way we played in the second half in our game against Kaizer Chiefs, and the second half in the game against Orlando Pirates, and the wins against Mamelodi Sundowns and Bloemfontein Celtic,” Middendorp said.

“Against Stars on Friday, the first half was one of the best I have seen since I have been here.

“I can’t’ tell you how frustrated I was when I left the stadium.

“It’s a disaster to lose 2-0 at home to Free State Stars, but we should have been 5-1 up at half-time.

“And if we continue with the same movement forward then we cannot continue to miss those same chances forever in future matches.

“We will continue with the same approach against Wits, with this vertical passing and running off the ball, and then in the next match after that too,” the coach affirmed.

Middendorp says some United players are still only reaching their potential this season.

“Kurt Lentjies is still only at 60% after coming back from a hamstring injury. I still believe Diyo Sibisi is on his way to being a very, very good player in the PSL.

“We will look for more from Fadlu Davids in the second half of the season, and from Peter Petersen who has been in and out of the team too much.”

With the transfer window opening next month the United coach says the club will be looking for experience and quality to bolster the squad.

“We already have so many young players, so if we sign anyone it will be an experienced player who can go straight into the first team and play 90 minutes immediately and add something.”

Key defensive midfielder John Arwuah returns from suspension for United in tonight’s game.

Wits are using Mbombela Stadium for a second time this season, having enjoyed the support they received there in their 1-0 win over Mamelodi Sundowns in November.

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