Mamelodi Sundowns senior coach Steve Komphela admitted it felt like “two points dropped,” after his side were held to a 1-1 draw by Maritzburg United in a top versus bottom DStv Premiership clash at the Harry Gwala Stadium on Saturday evening.
Themba Zwane put Sundowns ahead with his 6th goal of the season, but Kwanda Mngonyama equalised after the break to give Ernst Middendorp’s team their first point of the campaign.
“I thought it was going to be very difficult,” said Komphela afterwards on SuperSport TV, speaking instead of co-coach Manqoba Mngqithi, who was shown a red card by Victor Gomes for protesting a poor tackle by Thabiso Kutumela on Zwane towards the end of the game.
“And it showed. We did not have the space we normally create, and one observed, with a discussion with the rest of the team, a lack of freshness. It could have been the long travelling, or whatever, but you can never have excuses in football, you have to perform. And compliments to them (Maritzburg) they were fighting hard.
“It feels more like two points dropped, because we are ambitious and desperate to get on with business. The goal we conceded, too, from a set play, we practice this every time, and it is just unfortunate and painful that we conceded from something we always work on.”
Sundowns did miss an absolute sitter in the second half, Peter Shalulile blazing over an open goal a gilt-edged chance that would have put the Brazilians 2-0 up. And Sundowns paid the price as Mngonyama’s well-placed header beat Denis Onyango and went in off a post.
“They missed a top chance at the second post, but good, it is part of the game,” admitted Middendorp.
“I think in total, our game against SuperSport was good (United lost 2-1) and we continue to find our way out (of trouble), at the moment everyone is prepared to contribute … I am sure at the end of the season we will make it out of this miserable season,” added the German, who has taken over from Eric Tinkler as the man charged with leading the Team of Choice to safety.