Ernst Middendorp resists the temptation to celebrate after Pirates win
Kaizer Chiefs’ 4-2 penalty shoot-out victory over Orlando Pirates will not lull coach Ernst Middendorp into a false sense of security.
Shortly after they confirmed their place in the semifinals of the Telkom Knockout in Durban‚ Middendorp was not in a celebratory mood and preferred to point out some defensive errors he observed.
Chiefs conceded goals from Fortune Makaringe in the first half and Gabadinho Mhango early in extra-time and Middendorp believes they could have defended better.
“Soccer is a game of mistakes‚ we haven’t really been fantastic at the back and it showed with how we conceded‚” he said.
“I don’t like the word happiness — we are not satisfied because we could have done better and there were actions where we could have done much better by supporting each other better.”
Middendorp‚ whose team plays a premiership match against Chippa United in Port Elizabeth on Wednesday‚ said despite the two goals they conceded, he is satisfied with the manner in which his players approached the shoot-out.
“We have built confidence game by game and you could see even during the shoot-out that players were not running away,” he said, adding that all the players were willing to take penalties.
“We have to challenge ourselves and not be satisfied that we are in the second round. There must always be a drive and energy to want to do more.”
Chiefs scored their two goals after the dismissal of Pirates defender Mthokozisi Dube in the 50th minute, but Middendorp said playing a team with a man down is never easy.
“Most of the time it gets difficult because players start relaxing‚” he said. “We brought in Bernard Parker with his experience and we pressed a high line‚ but it is difficult because the opponents wait for the counter and for your mistakes.
“It was the result that we targeted to get to the next round and it was a highly entertaining game.
“It’s always something special with a performance like this in the derby. We were 1-0 down and it could have been different, but you have to take risks.
“We had the right mentality‚ discipline and attitude towards the game and we are satisfied with the result even if it was on penalties.
“Pirates have a bunch of good players everywhere.
“I am looking forward to the next derby on Saturday. But our concentration goes to the game on Wednesday against Chippa.”