Thu. Dec 2nd, 2021

    The Buccaneers dominated possession and territory in Pietermaritzburg, but for the most part, they failed to penetrate a resolute home defence

    Orlando Pirates coach Fadlu Davids felt his side could have done with a bit more creativity in the game against Maritzburg United, a 0-0 draw at the Harry Gwala Stadium on Wednesday evening.

    While Maritzburg keeper Marcel Engelhardt did pull off a couple of good saves, he was not overly tested on the night, even after the hosts had been reduced to 10 men following Brandon Theron’s 66th-minute red card for a foul on Thabang Monare.

    And while it was clear that Maritzburg coach Ernst Middendorp had set up his side to avoid a third consecutive league defeat, Davids felt that his team could have done with a bit more spark and innovation.

    “Quite disappointing in the first half not to take advantage of the opportunities you create.

    “Of course on the other hand you have to give credit to the opponent in terms of their defensive display,” he told SuperSport TV, on his return to his former club.

    “Yes they never really had a shot on target to disturb our goalkeeper, but then it falls on us to be able to unlock this defence line.

    “Of course them playing four centre-backs, compiling of their four defence line – they changed to the second half with a five defence line.”

    The Pirates co-coach felt that if his side could have somehow forced the first goal, more might have followed.

    “And then you have to be creative, you have to unlock this block which you are presented with,” said the former Platinum Stars and Maritzburg United striker.

    “We tried to go through the centre, not possible. We tried to go with extreme width, not really possible and [we were] unfortunate not to get the goal; to unlock the game.

    “The one goal was going to unlock the game and open them up. Then they would not have been able to sit back as deep as they would like to.”

    The result left Bucs in sixth spot on the table with 10 points – nine adrift of pace-setters Mamelodi Sundowns.

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