Amakhosi will next welcome relegation haunted Maritzburg United, one of Middendorp’s former teams.
“We’re at that stage of the season where points matter most,” commented Ernst Middendorp after his side took three points from a resilient Highlands Park.
“The match was tough. Credit goes to Highlands Park. They really gave us a run for our money. It’s not always about how you play, it is about getting the points in the bag.”
The encounter finished 3-2 in favour of Amakhosi with Bernard Parker, Leonardo Castro and Dumsani Zuma finding the back of the net.
“We conceded soft goals,” admitted the Kaizer Chiefs coach, “but when you score more goals than the opponent, it is easier to work on the mistakes. We will take these three points and go back to the training grounds to prepare for our next match.”
Middendorp made three substitutions during the game, bringing on Siphosakhe Ntiya-Ntiya for Teenage Hadebe, Dax Andrianarimanana for the injured Bernard Parker and Mario Booysen for Man of the Match, Dumsani Zuma.
“Teenage has been doing well for us at the back,” reflected Middendorp. “However, he had a few nervy moments in this game, and I thought that bringing on Ntiya-Ntiya would make a difference.”
It turned out to be correct and, besides his defensive work, Ntiya-Ntiya also provided the assist for Castro to score Amakhosi’s second goal.
“We select the best team for each match,” explained the Chiefs coach. “We watch the players during training and, accordingly, decide on the starting line-up. I’m happy with the result and, above all, with the three points collected.”