Johannesburg – SuperSport United coach Cavin Johnson believes his side will have to improve in front of goal if the Pretoria side is to challenge for Premiership honours this season.
Johnson was speaking after United's 2-1 defeat to Moroka Swallows in Atteridgeville on Wednesday night, bringing an end to Matsatsantsa's unbeaten start to the new league season.
The former Platinum Stars boss said he was not concerned with the amount of goals scored in their last two outings, but rather at what he described as an erratic display from his strikers.
“I'm more worried about the players' mentality when they are in front of goal,” Johnson said at the Lucas Moripe Stadium after the game.
“For me, it's a little bit erratic. It was the same in the game against Black Aces, where we had our opportunities, but in that particular moment, you find that the player becomes too erratic.
“For example, we had two good chances in the end. If the players were able to control their emotions and control the fact that they're looking for the equaliser we could have got the equaliser and maybe the winner.”
Having clawed their way back into the tie after going two goals down, Edwin Gyimah's late header from a Thuso Phala set-piece sparked the hosts into action, as United launched wave after wave of attack in an attempt to draw level.
But with a combination of poor finishing and a superb effort by the Swallows defence and goalkeeper Greg Etafia, SuperSport could not find the inspiration to square up the game.
“Some you're going to win, some you're going to lose. Today I lost, but in moments, there were things we can build on again,” Johnson added.
“We did play some good football, but all credit to Moroka Swallows and Zeca. They took it away from me at home and hopefully the return match I can take three points away from them at Dobsonville.”
Despite the defeat, Johnson's outfit stay at the top of the league standings with 10 points, ahead of Swallows and AmaZulu, also on 10 points, but who trail due to an inferior goal difference.
SuperSport next take on AmaZulu in Durban. Johnson said he was confident his side could claim a victory against the surprise package during the early stages of the new season.
“We're going over to AmaZulu, which in my mind, they're up and down (inconsistent) also,” Johnson said.
“They are third on the log, we are still first on the log. But the tighter it is, the harder we have to push as coaches and the better we have to make sure the recovery of the players going into the next game is as good as we can get it.”
Meanwhile, Marques said Swallows had done well to climb up to second on the log.
“The fact that we won away is a great morale boost. Psychologically it's huge for us,” Marques said.
“Today we caught up to SuperSport, which for us obviously is a great moment. This game is over, tomorrow morning we wake up and focus on Maritzburg United, because it's one game at a time; that's how we take it.”
In Wednesday's other results, Orlando Pirates were made to work hard for their narrow 1-0 win over lowly Polokwane City.
Platinum Stars beat the University of Pretoria 1-0 in Rustenburg. Maritzburg United eased past Mpumalanga Black Aces with a 2-0 victory and Golden Arrows went down 1-0 at home to Free State Stars. – Sapa