Happy with the point

2016-01-13 06:00
                                                       PHOTO: gallo images Maritzburg United’s Kwanda Mngonyama takes on Chippa United’s Mark Mayambela, and said he was happy with their draw against SuperSport United, and was looking forward to this

PHOTO: gallo images Maritzburg United’s Kwanda Mngonyama takes on Chippa United’s Mark Mayambela, and said he was happy with their draw against SuperSport United, and was looking forward to this

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IT wasn’t a win, but Maritzburg United are not too disappointed with their 2-2 draw against SuperSport United on Sunday.

Despite having led the three-time league champions twice, Team of Choice defender Kwanda Mngon­yama, who scored the second goal, said the draw was not a bad result, considering the position the club currently occupy on the league table.

“It was an away game, so we’ll take the point,” Mngonyama, on loan from Mamelodi Sundowns, said.

“We wanted to win and take all three points, but we’ll take this result. It’s better than a loss, especially in the position that we’re in.”

Although they still find themselves at the foot of the table, their luck seems to be turning, and they are currently on a run of four games without a loss. Strange as it may sound, the last time they were beaten was in the first week of November.

“We have to stick together and believe that we will turn the corner,” Mngonyama said, adding that their unbeaten run of games has given them a boost. “We won’t give up, and we still believe that it is in our hands.”

Mngonyama and United now turn their focus to this weekend’s game against fellow strugglers Orlando Pirates, who are short on confidence, and whose fans are running short on patience.

“The game against SuperSport definitely gives us the confidence for the next game. We are getting better as a team,” Mngonyama said.

The national under-23 defender also said that they were focusing on just the Pirates game, and not thinking about the games after that — against Golden Arrows and parent-club Sundowns.

Mngonyama has not been the player he was last season when he was part of the mean defence that saw United achieve a top-eight finish. It’s something he acknowledged, adding he was working hard on getting back to his best.

“I didn’t start the season well, but I am progressing. Even some of the guys have been telling me that I am getting back to the level I was playing at last season,” he said.

The 22-year-old has much to look forward to in 2016 as he should be, fitness permitting, part of the national under-23 team who head to Rio de Janeiro for the Summer Olympics. However, he said he was only focusing on United’s league season and helping the club avoid relegation.

Saturday’s game comes at a good time for United with Pirates on a torrid run of form, and with a congested fixture list thanks to their CAF Confederation’s Cup campaign that only ended in the end of November.

Having played on the weekend, Eric Tinkler’s Sea Robbers come to Pietermaritzburg on Saturday to take on Middendorp’s troops.

But, second-from-bottom University of Pretoria should not cause the Buccaneers too many problems at Orlando Stadium.

While Tinkler has repeated that he won’t quit the club, the patience of chairperson Irvin Khoza must be running low, and any dropped points could break the camel’s back.

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