‘Chippa heads still held high’

Thabiso Semenya, left, from Polokwane City and Paseka Mako, of Chippa, chase the ball during their Absa Premiership clash at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Picture: Werner Hills

Team’s morale intact despite defeat to Polokwane in hard-fought home game

Chippa United’s morale is still intact despite their Absa Premiership 1-0 loss to Polokwane City at the Nelson Mandela Bay in Port Elizabeth Stadium on Saturday, coach Teboho Moloi said.

A late penalty by hard-running City striker Rodney Ramagalela made the difference between the two sides.

The loss to Rise and Shine sees the Chilli Boys end the first half of the Absa Premiership on a low after their second consecutive defeat.

“We expected to get the three points and now I realise that there is too much complacency in the team,” Moloi said.

“We thought that we lost against Ajax Cape Town because of the hype.

“Some of the players cannot handle everything that is happening. They cannot withstand the pressure of being at the top.

“They are used to being at the bottom of the log where they would have to fight relegation and they cannot handle the hype that comes with the praises they have been receiving,” he said.

“There are a lot of factors that affect the players and we need to sit down and iron out

all the problems the team is facing. There are plenty of psychological factors that need to be fixed.

Moloi said the team needed to go back to basics and start the second half of the season on a good foot. “The team needs to start doing what they have been doing all along. “The morale in the team is intact because the boys still have their heads held high after losing again. “Some of the players are young and have experienced being part of a growing team.

“The team is going through a major transformation,” Moloi said.

“The hype is all new to them and we need to make sure they get used to it.

“They need to understand that when you are at the top, you need to start working even harder. “It is easy to go up but it is more difficult to maintain that position.

“We need to work on these aspects and fix all things surrounding the team,” he said.

Polokwane City coach Bernard Molekwa praised Chippa United for the sterling performance and expressed hopes his team would maintain the winning mentality.

“Chippa United played really well today and this was not an easy victory for us,” Molekwa said.

“We fought till the last minute. They came at us with guns blazing but I am happy with how my players were able to hold them off.

“We really needed the three points,” he said.

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