Ajax Cape Town head coach Muhsin Ertugral believes that there is still a lot of room for improvement despite the club’s positive start to the 2018-19 National First Division (NFD) season.
The Urban Warriors moved up to second spot on the log standings following a 2-1 win over Maccabi FC at Cape Town Stadium this past weekend, with goals from Guy Stephane Bedi and Thendo Mukumela leading the club to our third win in five matches.
Here is what Ertugral had to say in the aftermath of the clash:
Coach, what was your overall impression of the match against Maccabi?
“I would not say it was very difficult, for 60 minutes we dominated the game, we conceded a goal which was a result of a chain of mistakes. Rodrick attempted something he could not pull off and then an experienced defender in Sibusiso tried something he shouldn’t, then the defence had to go backwards and the goalkeeper was exposed. It was a chain of mistakes.
“Then suddenly we were on the back foot, but the attitude was good, our will to come back was very good.
“We changed the system during the game and we clicked, generally I am not happy about the midfield, we need to look within ourselves to see what we can do better as we could not find the pockets and deliver the right passes. So generally we have a lot of work to do in the midfield.”
How frustrating is it that the team were guilty of giving the ball away aimlessly on occasion…
“Obviously we need to look into that more and do better because last week [against TS Sporting] was the same, we conceded something very similar to that off our own mistakes and we have 5 to 6 goal chances and we did not score. We need to be more stable in our approach.”
Has the team reached the goal set by yourself after five matches?
“Yes, next week its going to be a tough one I think, we are up against one of the contenders [Richards Bay FC]. So if we manage to get points there, then it will be even better for our target.
What have you got to say about the substitutes you made in the second half ?
“It has been hard for Sedwyn [George], I could not see that talent in training sessions, I must say he took his chance very well, in the last two, three weeks he seems to be in higher spirits and scores in training sessions
“He is very positive, like Thabo [Mosadi] as well, so that results in him being in the line-up. So we need to praise them for what they do in training as I am always a coach that really gives someone a chance if they work really hard, I will give them the chance.
Are you confident that the wins will continue to come?
“Yes, I hope so, I am not completely happy with the defensive line but today [Saturday] our important players were not in but hopefully they will find their way back very soon. [Tamsanqa] Teyise is a player we would have loved to have in the team as he gives us unbelievable balance at the back. The way the team performed in this sixty minutes [refer to first question] gives us a lot of hope.”
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