Concern over United’s league form

2019-12-11 06:00
Maritzburg United boss Farook Kadodia. PHOTO: gallo

Maritzburg United boss Farook Kadodia. PHOTO: gallo

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MARITZBURG United’s management have expressed a deep concern about the team’s recent results in the Absa Premiership and hope that coach Eric Tinkler makes it abundantly clear to his men that there has to be a more satisfactory balance between cup aspirations and league stability.

Club boss Farook Kadodia says the directors can understand the players’ excitement for their Telkom Knockout final duel with Mamelodi Sundowns on December 14 in Durban, but there’s no real justification for the way they have dropped points in the Premiership of late.

“The league is our bread and butter, so we hope the coach can successfully stress to the players this week that we cannot put our league position in jeopardy by preserving ourselves for the Tel­kom Knockout final,” he said. “Yes, it is an honour for players to be in a cup final, but we really need points in the league now. There has to be a consistent approach to league and cup games.”

Though they were able to stun Kaizer Chiefs in the Telkom Knockout semi-finals in Nelspruit a fortnight ago, United have drastically reduced their chances of meeting their chosen Christmas points tally by failing to bag a win in their last four league assignments.

Their loyal fans will recall, with a strong measure of disappointment, that there has been a near-scandalous dearth of goals by Tinkler’s men in their three draws and one loss experienced in the period.

To confirm, there was a goalless stalemate with Orlando Pirates in Soweto at the beginning of November, followed by a 2-2 draw with Bloem Celtic in Maritzburg, a 2-0 loss to SuperSport United at the same venue and another tasteless goalless encounter with AmaZulu in Durban on Sunday. As a result, Tinkler’s side will need to do all they can to secure maximum points off lowly Polokwane City and log-leading Chiefs in their next two league games to meet their already-modest target of 20 points from 14 matches by the Christmas recess. They travel to Polokwane on Sunday and, after enjoying the Telkom Knockout final in Durban six days later, will host Chiefs on December 22 to close off the year’s football business.

With 14 points from 12 outings so far, the local club are sitting in 10th position in the 16-team standings, but are just two points clear of the relegation zone.

FIXTURES

Friday

SuperSport v Highlands — 8 pm

Saturday

Baroka v Pirates — 3.30 pm

Leopards v AmaZulu — 3.30 pm

CT City v Chippa — 6 pm

Chiefs v Celtic — 8.15 pm

Sunday

Polokwane v Maritzburg — 3.30 pm.

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