Kaizer Chiefs coach Steve Komphela was frank in his assessment of his team’s defeat against Mamelodi Sundowns this weekend.
“It is one of those matches that we gave away,” coach Steve Komphela lamented after Kaizer Chiefs’ 3-1 loss to Mamelodi Sundowns on Saturday night. “We were leading with three minutes to go to halftime and we committed an error at that critical phase of the game.”
The Amakhosi coach refers hereby to the free kick that his side gave away and which resulted in Sundowns’ equaliser. The set-piece for the home side was the result of a foul by Kgotso Moleko on Keagan Dolly.
“There was no danger in that area,” Komphela added. “Credit, however, must go to Leonardo Castro. He took the header well, even though we could have done better defending that free kick.”
The Chiefs coach watched his side go through a compilation of misfortunes during the match.
Firstly, Erick Mathoho was adjudged to have handled the ball in the eighteen. Referee Robert Smith pointed to the spot, which Thabo Nthethe coolly slotted home.
Then, Lorenzo Gordinho got a second booking and had to walk for an early shower and, finally, it was Willard Katsande’s uncharacteristic own goal that sealed it for the Brazilians.
“If you look at things that happened on the night,” Komphela reflected. “It was just impossible for us to win. The way things were going: a penalty, an own goal, a red-card – and all that in one game. Show me a team that can win when all these things happen.”
About the contest itself, the Chiefs coach observed: “Sundowns always try to press high up the field. We needed a bit of arrogance to counter that. We coped rather well. However, once you are a man down it’s always going to be difficult.”
Komphela finished his match analyses with a compliment to his team: “We demonstrated a will to play, even when one man and two goals down. Credit goes to my players for doing that.”
Chiefs remain in third spot on the Absa Premiership log. The next fixture will be at home (FNB Stadium) against an unpredictable Bloemfontein Celtic on Wednesday, 4 April (kick-off is at 19:30).