Cape Town City have the worst defensive record in the Absa Premiership after conceding two goals in a 2-1 away defeat to fellow strugglers Black Leopards on Sunday. Their goals against tally is now 20.
The Citizens’ new head coach Jan Olde Riekerink has his work cut out for him during the forthcoming international break to make his team as defensively strong as they are on attack.
City have netted 19 goals, a feat that puts them level with table-topping Kaizer Chiefs.
After a third league defeat in four outings, City sit fourth from bottom on the 16-team log on 11 points.
Dutch-born Riekerink is still waiting for his work permit and therefore has had to watch the last two games from the stands and left the on-field calls in the capable hands of his assistant Vasili Manousakis.
It was always going to be a tough ask on City to come away from the bout with Leopards with something taking into account that getting to the venue in Limpopo Province required a plane trip, a bus trip and overnight stay in Polokwane and then another bus ride to get to the Thohoyandou Stadium.
There was also the partisan crowd, heat and altitude to contend with.
The Capetonians did, however, put up a good fight and at 1-1 in the 50th minute, after a strike from leftwing Bradley Ralani, looked set to gain at least a point out of the visit, but then City conceded the deciding goal seven minutes from the final whistle.
Manousakis was disappointed with the latest loss.
“Obviously we are a little disappointed with the result in the end.
"Our idea was clear, our intentions were clear to come here and to win the game,” he said.
“We didn’t sit back by any means; you could see that with all the possession we had.
“We played the ball sometimes a bit too slowly in the first half and we fixed it in the second half, and the moment we equalised we gained a bit of momentum and had one or two fantastic chances.
“The difference for us was that Leopards played on the counter-attack very aggressively. They didn’t retain the ball, they just sat back, waited and created some good chances in the second half because of the transition, and that’s where we lacked a bit.
“Our defensive transition to get back into position and try and defend was a little slower than usual, and that’s where we got caught out,” Manousakis pointed out.
City will be back in action on November 27 away to Bloemfontein Celtic.