Fadlu's once bitten, twice shy
Posted: 17 January 2018 Time: 08:10
Maritzburg United coach Fadlu Davids is determined to keep his men grounded after two wins in a row given what happened earlier in the season.
Maritzburg have started 2018 brightly with a 2-1 win at Ajax Cape Town and 4-0 trouncing of Telkom Knockout finalists Bloemfontein Celtic.
However, Davids is wary of complacency creeping in, as United hit an 11-game winless run in all competitions after opening the season with victories over Mamelodi Sundowns, Platinum Stars and Ajax.
“Let’s hope we can use the confidence, but I have to be very wary,” Davids told his club's website.
“We started the season like this, three wins in a row. It’s two league wins now and I have to keep the players grounded, keep them aware of what happened in the beginning of the season, keep them calm, keep them structured in their thinking. We must use the confidence but not become complacent.”
Davids hopes the side can grow in confidence in the final third and maintain their intensity.
“My first job in pre-season was getting the defensive structures sorted, how we defend in a deeper block, in a zone two block, higher pressing zone. First the foundation of the defence, now the next step is to be able to get them more effective in the final third,” he explained.
“Yes, the players are improving, but now it’s a thinking issue. I have to keep them structured and calm and not getting over excited by the performance.
“We manage them with our periodisation model we use, in terms of not running around the pitch, but building up their fitness step by step. We have to manage them, we have got three games now. We play Wednesday SuperSport, Saturday we are at Goble Park [against Free State Stars], with the travelling. So we have to manage them in order to keep the intensity high.
“We are lucky in terms of how we have planned and our medical department must get credit because there have been zero muscle injuries this season. We have to continue the same way.”
The Team of Choice, in seventh spot on the table with 24 points from 16 matches, next host 12th-placed SuperSport United at Harry Gwala Stadium on Wednesday night.