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Ernst Middendorp thanks Maritzburg chairman following victory over Royal AM

Ernst Middendorp of Maritzburg United during the DStv Premiership match against TS Galaxy at Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit on 23 April 2022. Picture: Dirk Kotze/BackpagePix

Ernst Middendorp of Maritzburg United during the DStv Premiership match against TS Galaxy at Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit on 23 April 2022. Picture: Dirk Kotze/BackpagePix

Published May 5, 2022

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Johannesburg - Maritzburg United coach has lauded the impact made by club chairman Farook Kadodia's 'pep talk' as they prepared to take on in-form Royal AM in a league clash on Wednesday night.

"The chairman had a number of meetings with the players and staff and just reminded everyone how important it is to not allow the relegation battle to drag on until the last day. We needed to win this game in particular because we're playing two away games after this," said Middendorp.

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"We are aware of what we need to do if we want to survive, we know how important it is to band together and fight for each other."

The Team of Choice made a significant stride towards their bid for survival when they upset Royal AM and grabbed just their sixth win of the season.

ALSO READ: Maritzburg United take one step closer to safety after beating high-flying Royal AM

The Pietermaritzburg-based club are up to 12th place on the DStv Premiership table and are four points ahead of 15th-placed Swallows FC.

There was substantial movement in the relegation zone this week as both TS Galaxy and Baroka picked up maximum points, but Middendorp played down the fact that his charges were motivated by the results in and around them.

"Teams around us received surprising results, but you can't predict these things and they didn't have any impact on us, we just received amazing support behind the scenes and that helped us tonight," he said.

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Maritzburg have had an unpredictable 2021/2022 season capturing the tag of 'the most consistently inconsistent' side in the league.

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Before their victory against provincial rivals Royal AM, they had last won a league match at the beginning of March, a shock result against champions Mamelodi Sundowns.

Club captain Clayton Daniels believes he and his teammates need to work on building on their confidence-boosting victories and use them as fuel for their upcoming matches.

"We spoke about that as a group, we are able to beat the teams at the top, but seem to struggle against the ones in and around us. I think we're too careful around those games because we think there's too much on the line," he told SuperSport TV after the match.

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"But we'll have to build on these kinds of performances and take them into our upcoming games and continue to fight for the people of Pietermaritzburg and for this club."

@SmisoMsomi16

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