United can beat any team, says Ian Palmer

2011-08-19 00:00

THERE is no side in the PSL that Maritzburg United cannot beat, playing at home or away, team boss Ian Palmer said yesterday.

Palmer watched on as his side came back from a goal down against Ajax Cape Town on Wednesday night to rescue a point through a late Fadlu Davids header.

While the draw will be seen by many critics as a good one for United, Palmer said he feels his side could have returned to Pietermaritzburg with maximum points.

“If you look at the amount of chances that we had in the game, especially in the second half, then you’ll see that we could have won it,” the coach said.

United started the game slowly and were under pressure in the first half hour with left back Thabang Matuka struggling immensely to keep up with last season’s PSL runners-up.”

Matuka was replaced before the end of the first half by Rheece Evans — a move Palmer said was crucial.

“Once Rheece came on the pitch he stabilised everything and we became the better side after that.”

Wednesday night also saw United start veteran goalkeeper Francis Chansa ahead of Tashrique Goldman, who had played in the season opener against Wits in the absence of Shu-Aib Walters, who is recovering from a chest infection.

Chansa kept United in the game early on with a string of impressive saves.

Palmer said, “Chansa was fantastic. He will give Shu-Aib some competition for a starting place, but he is not fully fit yet. We will see how he goes at training this week.”

Davids, who underwent surgery twice last season, came off the bench and scored a goal that Palmer said was very important for his club captain.

“Fadlu scored his goal at just the right time for him and it will do his confidence the world of good.”

United next face Orlando Pirates in a home game on Wednesday, and Palmer has said he believes his side can notch up their first victory of the season against the league favourites.

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