SBN - Soccer Betting News - SA's Leading Soccer Betting Newspaper: Eric Tinkler: Maritzburg a bit lucky to beat Chiefs

Eric Tinkler: Maritzburg a bit lucky to beat Chiefs

Maritzburg United head coach Eric Tinkler

Maritzburg United head coach Eric Tinkler admits his charges were rather fortunate to claim a 2-1 win over Kaizer Chiefs on Saturday.

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Chiefs were the favourites to grab another three points at home and seemed to hit their stride early in the game as they created a number of opportunities, but none of them found the mark.

United made some tactical changes and they worked out well for the travelers as they took a 2-0 lead thanks to goals from Dylon Claasen just after the hour mark.

Samir Nurkovic pulled one back for Chiefs in the 78th minute but Tinkler's men held on for a valuable three points.

"I thought our first half performance was not great at all to be brutally honest and I'll take full responsiblity for that because as I mentioned I made some tactical changes and I was trying to be a little bit too clever and obviously it didn't work for us in that first-half," Tinkler said on SuperSport TV after the match.

"Even in the first half I had to make a change, I had to put Siyanda [Xulu] to play with the back three but ultimately we were way too defensive, we were looking to soak up a lot of pressure and we were really poor in that first-half.

"So, unfortunately I had to sacrifice Siyanda, as I said, not a fault of his rather by mine, go back to our normal structure, bring Pogiso [Sanoka] out and far better performance in the second-half.

"I think you know we started to look a lot more organised, we looked a lot beter going forward, we started to create chances and we got the goals but we had to hang on to be honest. They're [Chiefs] always going to be a threat from set-pieces, that's been their biggest strength this season, the amount of goals they scored from that, they got one.
"Then we had to hold on to be brutally honest, ja we'll take the three points and run, it wasn't a great first half, better second-half but maybe we can count ourselves a little bit lucky today."
"I don't know what he is trying to achieve or wants to show people he can win the league without Khune.

"Daniel Akpeyi is slow to dive, his reaction is slow. That goal on Saturday was supposed to stay in the goal line if he was not going to catch the ball. The guy doesn't command.

"Khune is vocal and can marshal the defence. He can play the ball with his feet and distribute the ball well. I am not happy with the way Chiefs play. I love the club and I grew up there.

"Their defence is slow but the presence of Khune helps because he can communicate well at the back."

Middendorp will now have a selection dilemma when he selects his side for the Nedbank Cup clash against Highlands Park on Saturday.