Roger de Sa backs Ajax’s young defensive unit
Posted: 9 February 2016 Time: 11:04
Ajax Cape Town coach Roger de Sa says he is happy with his young defensive unit, who he backs to continue growing from strength to strength.
Ajax have started their last three matches with a back four comprising of new signing Lawrence Lartey and Rivaldo Coetzee in the heart of defence, with Abbubaker Mobara and Mosa Lebusa in the full-back positions – the latter being the oldest of the four at just 23 years old.
De Sa feels that despite their youth, the quartet provides the most-balanced defensive line for the club, which has the coach’s backing.
“That’s definitely our best back four,” De Sa said. “It’s the most balanced – we can attack with that back four, Mobara and Musa like going forward, and we’ve got good stability at the back.
“I think the only problem with that back four is that they’re pretty young, they’re all pretty much the same age so there’s no leader as such.”
The Urban Warriors’ coach reserved special praise for the club’s new Ghanaian recruit, and hailed the entire defensive contribution in keeping SuperSport United’s star-studded attack at bay in their 3-1 win on the weekend.
“Lartey has gotten better and better every game and against SuperSport he was probably our best player on the park,” he said. “A lot of good interceptions, and a lot of good blocks with very good strikers at SuperSport – Phala, Wome, Brockie, Nkhatha, then Grobler, it’s quite a formidable line-up they brought against our kids, and we seemed to cope with it pretty well. So that is our best back four.”
Despite De Sa’s praise, Ajax have kept just one clean sheet in their last ten matches, yet their coach says he’s still pleased with their overall performance as he jokingly brought up Rivaldo Coetzee’s own goal against Orlando Pirates.
“We can’t have clean sheets when the ball rolls under the keeper’s foot at times – those things happen, but overall I’m pretty happy with the way they’ve played,” he added.
Ajax, who lie eighth in the PSL standings, take on third-placed Mpumalanga Black Aces in their next encounter on Wednesday evening.