Mamelodi Sundowns’ midweek result was significant as the Tshwane team stamped their authority in the DStv Premiership with an incredible 3-0 triumph over TS Galaxy and created an 18 point gap between them and second placed Royal AM. Downs Co-Coach Manqoba Mngqithi is however adamant that his teams’ performance was lacking despite their victory over Galaxy.
“I don’t think we had a very good first half, we lost too many balls and we gave a little bit more freedom to the center backs to initiate attacks. We looked like a team that was a little bit tired and we knew that we had refreshed the team. We knew what we wanted to do and we believed it was going to work for us, but structurally we made some mistakes in our build up, there were moment’s that we were not happy as coaches.”
Coach Manqoba noted an improvement with the second-half display and thought Bafana Ba Style maintained a high standard leading to the two other goals scored in the remaining encounter.
“In our high press we made far too many mistakes in the first half, but in the second half we came back a lot stronger, we were aware of what to do in most instances when we lost possession of the ball. We had very good counter pressing moments and when we regained possession, I think we had better options in the second half.”
The Brazilians made their way to a memorable victory in the CAF Champions League securing seven points in three matches played and currently sit at the top of the Group A log standing. The Coach is pleased to see the continental cup competition momentum being carried into the domestic league.
“Such milestones have an impact on the team, from what we see we think it has had a very positive impact. We were a little bit worried before the game that maybe subconsciously they might be elements of complacency based on the result that we got against Ahly, but we worked very hard on the minds of the players. My sincere thanks to Coach Rulani, Coach Steve Komphela and Coach Wendell Robinson for making sure that we preach the same message to the players and making sure that they understand that each and every game that we are playing as Sundowns we have a responsibility to win and our players showed that element of wanting to win this match.”
Coach Manqoba continued: “Our focus is never really on the championship that much, we’ve got our own processes that we always focus on because that’s where we gauge ourselves whether we’ve done well or not, so we are looking at that process. As to whether the Championship is gone or not, it’s never really what we focus on because we’ve got our own little milestones that we always want to achieve, be it the championship can be won earlier or not we would still be focusing all our attention in making sure that we better our best performance of last season and even maybe try and get as close as possible to the unthinkable in terms of the number of points.”
The Brazilians Coach was also pleased to see Khuliso Mudau display a solid defensive and attacking performance against The Rockets. He said, “I think Mudau has done very well from the beginning of the season up until now, he’s been one of our standout performers and that’s why he has made life very difficult even for Thapelo [Morena] in that space.”
“We still believe as Sundowns coaches that he’s still got a little bit more to give, the potential of that boy is bigger than what everyone else thinks, defensively he’s very solid, offensively he’s got a lot of good qualities, he can even play as a central midfielder which I think what helps him to be able to solve some tactical or technical issues that are demanded in the game.”
The Limpopo born star produced a strong performance in front of Masandawana’s backline and scored his first league goal in the first half to give his team a lead in the tough battle against Galaxy. Mudau’s glamorous style of play in both attack and defense has seen him walk away with a number of man of the match awards and last night marked another trophy in the bag for Sailor.
“I think he’s one of the few very modern full backs that can invert playing in a central and wide position comfortably, take on opponents one on one and those are very good attributes. Defensively he’s very powerful and very quick as well, I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before the National team coach sees him. I’m very confident that he will get into the national team very soon.” Praised Coach Manqoba.