We fought hard in the second half of this afternoons Derby game in an attempt to equalise against Maritzburg United but were unable to in the end.
Maritzburg opened the scoring in the 15th minute when Tlolane volleyed in a loose ball off a long throw in from Rae, giving the home side the only goal in the first half of play. We were unsettled in the first 45 and allowed the home side too much space to create opportunities. We settled late in the half and started creating chances, however could just not finish and Mtshali pushed an attempt over the bar just minutes before the break.
Coach Ncikazi made two tactical changes at the break, bringing on Mmodi and Sibiya in an attempt to bring a more attacking game plan. We looked better and more settled but allowed United to extend their lead in the 58th minute as Kutumela found the back of the net.
We responded immediately with Gumede bagging a goal off a cross from Sibiya. This seemed to add some fire to our game and the boys started playing up on attack with more confidence. Maritzburg were not deterred though and used their opportunities well, once again extending their lead in the 62nd minute by Hlongwane.
The boys persevered though, attacking the home side goals and trying to get another goal and a lifeline on the game. A hand ball in the 82nd minute by Maritzburgs Allie saw us being awarded a penalty which Sibiya converted. This sparked a hard drive in the last minutes of play to equalise.
After a good effort in which we dominated possession and position, in which we had a number of attempts at goal, the final whistle was blown. Unfortunately we ended up losing the game and missing out on points.
We have a week now to prepare for a game at home against TS Galaxy who are in their own fight to remain in the Top 8 for the season.