Benni McCarthy’s AmaZulu’s lack of goals not just strikers’ fault
Share this article:
Durban - AmaZulu attacking midfielder Henrick Ekstein says that his side is working hard ahead of their KwaZulu-Natal derby fixture against Maritzburg United at the Harry Gwala Stadium on Sunday.
“We’ve been preparing hard after we drew against Chiefs. It won’t be an easy match as derbies are never easy. It will be a tough one but we are ready for the match. For us the only thing we have to do is score goals. We are creating opportunities and scoring goals. It’s not only the strikers' problem but a problem for all of us,” said Ekstein.
A win for Usuthu at this point in time can do wonders to revive their confidence. They have won just one out of their last six games in all competitions and enter the match against the Team of Choice on the back of a frustrating 1-1 draw with Kaizer Chiefs.
While there is no shame in drawing with Chiefs, AmaZulu coach Benni McCarthy was irate after the game, lamenting the fact that his side simply wasted too many chances when they dominated possession in the game.
Usuthu have also so far been unable to emulate their heroic form from last season that led to them finishing a record-high second place in the league. They have so far won just three out of their 12 league games to date and enter their game against Maritzburg eighth in the standings.
On paper, AmaZulu do have the qualities required to inflict defeat upon Ernst Middendorp’s charges but Maritzburg have proven to be a problem for the Durban-based side in recent years.
Usuthu have won just one out of their last 12 games against Maritzburg with the latter winning six times in that period.
Meanwhile, Maritzburg United are also not in the best of form. The Team of Choice extended their winless run to four matches in the league following their 0-0 stalemate with Marumo Gallants earlier in the week.
However, given that Maritzburg have less resources and arguably ambition than AmaZulu, their form is not really much of a major cause for concern as they are still four points above the relegation zone and four points behind eighth place AmaZulu.
Using his wealth of experience, one can also expect Middendorp to use a high defensive line against Usuthu to counter the threat of the likes of Bongi Ntuli and Augustine Mulenga. AmaZulu will need to ensure that they attack well or they may be frustrated by their provincial neighbours.