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Football | Absa Premiership

Gavin Hunt © Backpagepix

SuperSport face Maritzburg test

SuperSport United will be out to end their winless streak in the Absa Premiership when they visit Maritzburg United at the Harry Gwala Stadium on Tuesday, kick-off at 19h30.

The Matsatsantsa are currently sitting in 11th place on the log with 11 points from 10 matches, with eight of them ending in draws.

The 1-0 loss to Kaizer Chiefs in their last league outing means Gavin Hunt’s men have now gone six matches without collecting maximum points.

The Tshwane-based side were also eliminated from the semifinals of the Telkom Knockout on Saturday, losing 1-0 to city rivals Mamelodi Sundowns, but Hunt believes the score would have been different had they converted their chances.

“We played well. I can't fault the players for effort,” he stated after the game. “We should have won the game; we had more than enough chances.”

The former Moroka Swallows coach believes their low conversion rate has been an ongoing problem, but says they will continue working hard until they get things right.

“We’ve been concerned about missing chances all season; we create many chances in every game but we haven’t been able to take full advantage,” explains an exasperated Hunt.

“We just have to keep going and keep working hard.”

Regarding their upcoming fixture against Maritzburg United, whom they defeated 2-0 in a recent cup encounter, Hunt says they are approaching the clash as a new game and not relying on previous statistics.

“It’s going to be a tough game away from home,” he said. “Cup games and league games are different, so we can’t even compare the two.”

Maritzburg are the side in-form going into this game as they are unbeaten in their last four league encounters, winning three and drawing one.

Ernst Middendorp’s side are also on a two-match winning streak following their 2-1 home win against Bloemfontein Celtic, and the 1-0 away victory over Lamontville Golden Arrows.

However, defender Mario Booysen believes they cannot afford to be complacent as they still have mistakes that they want to correct.

“The positive thing from the last few games is it has increased our self-belief and that’s very important in such a tough league,” he said.

“However, football is unpredictable and you’re only as good as what you produce on the day, so it’s important for us to go into each and every game with a fighting attitude.”

The Team of Choice are currently in fourth place on the Absa premiership log with 19 points from 10 matches and the former SuperSport United player believes it’s crucial for them to continue collecting points.

“This is the crucial stage of the season and we can’t afford to hit a slump because there’s still a long break coming up,” added Booysen.

“We have to win games and be able to come back stronger in the second round.

“SuperSport have not done well in the league but we know that they have good players and what they are capable of.

“They beat us in the cup, but that was through our own mistakes, so if we can minimize that and work as a team then we’ll do well in this game.”

The last league meeting between the two sides in Pietermaritzburg ended in a 0-0 draw.


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