Johannesburg – Maritzburg United midfielder Michael Morton bemoaned a moment of poor concentration which led to a lone goal from Orlando Pirates as United were edged in Soweto on Tuesday evening.
Second half replacement Helder Pelembe scored four minutes from the end to snatch a 1-0 Premiership victory over Morton’s side at Orlando Stadium, following a lapse which allowed the home side to grab three points.
“It was difficult, they pinned us in our own half for the majority of the game so getting out was difficult, just trying to add numbers when we did,” Morton said after the game.
“Defensively we were great tonight, just the one defensive lapse that let us down. I thought the boys put in a massive shift and we were just unlucky to concede at the end.”
A man-of-the-match display was not enough for Morton and the team of choice, who were sent crashing back down to earth, following a run of four unbeaten games.
“There’s tons of character in this squad and we keep on pushing until the end and we just didn’t get there in the end, so we were unlucky but we will keep on going,” said Morton, who has agreed to sign with SuperSport United at the end of the season.
Maritzburg coach Steve Komphela echoed his midfielder’s sentiments, adding he felt a draw was well on the cards until Pelembe’s late strike.
“I thought defensively, we were well-organised, even though just a couple of minutes to go until the end of the match, there was a lapse of concentration,” Komphela said.
“We left the area uncovered, but above all, I think I should be happy with the performance.
“Taking nothing away from them, we deserved a point. When we came out, you could see some indications of a team that was threatening, but we weren’t clinical.”
The defeat kept them Maritzburg rooted to 12th spot in the standings, with three games left to play as they prepare for their next assignment, a tricky tie with Ajax Cape Town at home on Friday. – Sapa