Eric Tinkler was far from happy about the surface his team played on over the weekend. Photo: BackpagePix
Eric Tinkler slammed the poor surface of the pitch at the King Zwelithini Stadium after his Maritzburg United team shared the spoils with AmaZulu in a 0-0 stalemate at the weekend.

The pitch was terrible and affected the flow of the game in the KwaZulu-Natal derby, and Tinkler did not mince his words in his assessment after the match

“To be brutally honest, everybody that was watching this on TV would have changed the channel. I don’t think the pitch helped either team. Both teams were forced to play ugly football. It wasn’t a great game of football,” Tinkler said.

Maritzburg are now 10th on the PSL standings with 14 points and they are in the Telkom Knockout final. They will face Mamelodi Sundowns next Saturday at the Moses Mabhida Stadium.

“We had to play off the second ball. It was extremely difficult. In the second half I don’t think anybody had a chance or created a chance or a keeper had to make a save. I thought we started well in the first (few) minutes. I think there was a potential penalty that should have gone our way. Obviously, I would love to watch that again on TV. Today, was all about fighting for the second ball. Defensively we were well-structured and organised. It is hard for me to be very critical of my players because of the pitch,” Tinkler said.

Tinkler is elated about the hunger that his players are showing ahead of the Telkom Knockout final.

“I’ve given a few guys opportunities. The young boy, Sanisa (Bongokuhle Hlongwane) has been doing well for our Diski Challenge side. Today, we felt that playing with two strikers upfront will be helpful because of the pitch. I knew we had to play aggressively upfront. We went with Judas (Moseamedi) and young Sanisa who, I think, did well. He will only get better. He has got speed, he has got good aggression. His second touch was difficult because of the pitch but technically he is a very good player,” Tinkler said.

Maritzburg are searching for their maiden trophy triumph in the PSL era.

“Deolin (Mekoa) came in and I thought he did well. He has been working hard at training. He gave us another direction. He can play through the middle. He can play wide. The options are there and we want that headache. It is good for us going into the final against Sundowns.” Tinkler said.

@minenhlecr7 


The Mercury

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