Coach Manqoba Reflects On Win In Gqeberha

Mamelodi Sundowns returned to their winning ways in a battle for points against Chippa United at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Wednesday evening. The Brazilians, who lost their second game of the season before coming into this battle, move up to the first place in the DStv Premiership after brushing off the Chili Boys by only a goal, Downs co-coach Manqoba Mngqithi reflects on the challenges they faced in Gqeberha.

“We expected a very tough match, Chippa has been dominant in set pieces and they’ve scored quite a lot of goals in that space. We were worried that if the game is played in our half and they create a lot of set pieces they might cause problems for us, that is why we played the game more in the opposition half a lot to try to put them under pressure. But credit must be given to their goalkeeper, I think he was exceptional today, when you have 91% ball possession in the final third and the opposition only has 9, that says something about the game, but at the end of the day with all the shots at goals and everything that we tried, we only scored one goal at the death of the match.”

“To be honest I think it was a very strong performance from Chippa with their low block and also very good transitional moments which nearly caused problems for us, and that is expected honestly. Our rest defense is not in the right space and we would always be caught, but otherwise I think it was an interesting match for spectators, but not so interesting for us as coaches because we believe that from the number of chances and the work that we’ve done, we should’ve had at least more than one goal. We should’ve probably scored earlier than finding ourselves in a situation where we had to dig very deep to find the result.”

Masandawana have scored only 12 goals in their campaign so far, a figure which is regarded to be low because of the Champions tendency to score significantly a large amount of goals. The defending Champions have played seven league matches and faced a toil in the final third of opponents due to the defensive structures that have been set up against them, Coach Manqoba noted the hassles his troops will be facing in their title defense, he said: “It’s what we always anticipate that we are going to have more than 80% of matches played with a very low block, and this is what’s been happening throughout the seasons and sometimes even some of the big teams resort to this strategy against us.”

“We are always preparing our team for that and we do create the opportunities that we want to create because our wish always is to break the game down very early, which is what I think is what happened in our game against  Kaizer Chiefs whereby very early in the game we’ve already put them on the sword and now they must come out. But if you don’t score those early chances that you get – if you bury one of those chances then the game changes its complexion and it becomes very difficult for the team that had planned to sit back when they now have to open out and come to you.” 

“And that is why it becomes easier that when you score you may end up scoring a lot of goals because now the strategy that was being prepared throughout the week was always to sit back and make life difficult, but that type of a game requires a lot of courage and character from our team and a lot of patience not to always look for that final pass. I think the second half was a little bit better with an extra touch and an extra pass to try and find openings and frustrate the opposition because the ball is always moving and I think we did that very well, but unfortunately when you’re not scoring the game looks like it’s very difficult.”

3 Responses
  1. Mfana

    Yes it’s so amazing that our opponents have resorted to this kind of approach when playing against us from the first minute the whole team gets behind the ball just to frustrate us with this ultra defensive approach.But what I have observed also is Peter Shalulile trying to beat this Mbesuma record of 25 goals per season,its not important to us,yesterday Tebogo Mokoena was in a better position to score when he tried by himself to beat the opponent and had he passed the ball maybe Mokoena should have scored.Records are nothing if the team doesn’t win but u r chasing a particular record Mngqithi&Rulani if Abubakker Nasir is not injured don’t compromise that by trying to appease certain individuals that boy is packing a lot of talent.There is nothing we are going to achieve by making him (Nasir)to stay at home,like we have been saying that Saavedra isn’t injured but you a certain way of giving us false information,as he played like a person who recovered a long time ago. Again Zungu needs to be introduced now,sooner than later, Tebogo Mokoena again is not fully settled if he does not want the starting berth he must give way to others.We have seen it we don’t know what happened to his self esteem.It will be difficult to win the league this year but let’s make it difficult for them to win it took. Parking the bus or whatever strategy applied by an opposition team has nothing to do with us but ourselves is to unsettle the strategy Otherwise good luck in whatever you do

  2. muzi kunene

    Mr coach I think the opposition teams is their prerogative right to park the bus,you our lovely Wisemen come with a plan B to unlock that stubborn defence its unfair to blame them for that,by the way who wants to loose.
    Downs have got plenty of players who can unlock any stubborn defence e.g Kapinga,Mbule,Rhalani and Mbulise etc.At Downs there’s a tendency I don’t understand since our Wisemen took over,every time our players getting injured rapidly you find a player finishes a game well come next game we are told he’s injured look at Rivaldo and Kekana how many months they’re in rehabilitation and even now I won’t be surprised if we are told in our next game Mvala or Saavreda are injured or the so called “ruled out” no Zwane phela naye ake alimale bandla so that we can see others, pls don’t get me wrong because he doesn’t select himself but we need a change,Modiba was cautioned so Ngobeni can cover him well.

  3. Dalom

    I’m happy you’ve noticed that coach. We’ll need players who can play in very tight spaces, your Zwanes and Sirinos. Just that Zwane’s legs are gone, but in games like these, he doesn’t have to run the whole field. Modiba did very well in the 2nd half, unlocking that defence on his side. I’m just hoping that your training sessions are going to be more on how to move those packed busses