A lengthy period without a win and without a goal was ended in fine style when the Team of Choice came from a goal down to beat Cape Town City 4-2 at the Princess Magogo Stadium on Tuesday night.
Coach Fadlu says his priority in what were testing times for the team was to show his unconditional backing for his charges.
“It’s about supporting them, a lot of them are young players, second season in the PSL. It was always about supporting them, shading them from the media, shading them from the pressure. I’ll take the pressure, that’s no problem.
“Even when they were not scoring they were still playing some fantastic football. Credit to them for sticking to it, having perseverance, and then delivering a performance like that.
“Going 1-0 down and having the character to come back, absolutely fantastic. You can put in whatever tactical structure, but at the end of the days it’s the players that did it.”
The Maritzburg tactician reiterated that he never doubted the attitude or the application of his men, which made him optimistic that the tide would turn.
“I knew the players were fighting for me, I knew they were behind me and trying, giving their all, 100 percent. Against Polokwane, against Bidvest Wits, they pushed, they fought, but it just wouldn’t go their way,” Fadlu explained.
“And every day in training, you see the spirit in the camp. If an outsider came to our training session in the last two or three weeks, they would never say this is a team that hasn’t scored for such a long time.
“We have a small squad, 23 players, and probably the youngest squad we have ever had. So they are close, a tight group, and we have a few senior players to lead them.”
The focus now however turns to Friday night’s match against Baroka FC at the Harry Gwala Stadium, and Fadlu says it’s important to put the Cape Town City win out of mind and focus purely on what will be another challenging game against a Bakgaga side that will be wanting to bounce back from a 0-4 loss to Mamelodi Sundowns.
“We have to keep our feet on the ground and that can be very tough for a young squad, they can get over-excited. They got over-excited by the praise for the football we were playing at the start of the season and it’s my job to be able to keep them calm and focussed. It’s a new job, Baroka is a fantastic team, a fantastic coach who allows the players to express themselves. It’s a new game, we have to erase this and start afresh for Baroka,” Fadlu concluded.
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