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Komphela discusses cognitive challenges

Posted: 3 October 2017 Time: 14:30

Kaizer Chiefs coach Steve Komphela has spoken on the challenges of training to defend a lead.

READ: Komphela unfazed by unruly fans

Chiefs often conceded late goals in a fourth-placed finish in the league last term, and are yet to convince that those issues are behind them after letting a lead slip in their last two matches against Bidvest Wits and Baroka.

Komphela has pointed out the mental aspect that comes with closing out a game.

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"I think the only thing that we do as coaches, apart from talking to players and highlighting the challenges, is to work on those challenges," says Komphela, who needed a police escort after his side lost 2-1 to Bakgaga at Moses Mabhida Stadium on the weekend.

"You come up with drills and sessions that address the mental part of the game... I think the most difficult feeling in coaching is to work on the aspects that trigger the cognitive part of the game; where the mind is involved. Most of the time it is more physical, it's more technical and all those.

"When it comes to the mind, aside from the example, it is very difficult. If you were to introduce a drill where you say, 'Listen, the other team is leading 1-0, its five minutes to go, the other team is one man down', it is a drill that is cognitive.

"You are forcing the people who are leading, who are one man down, to resist and also you are inviting those who are more but trailing to play with more urgency.

"And when it happens in a match you'd want to see that replicate itself that you are playing for a goal and they're playing for time... it's very important.

"You do highlight those but if you look into those it's about human behaviour... Can we do that spot on in a match?

"It would be different if you had scored some of the chances we had... it would've been now a story of a great comeback but we didn't take them.

"Then we would have to give reasons. How do you then solve a problem of a team that surrenders a lead and goes on to lose a match? It is sad part but you've got to work on it as a coach."

Amakhosi, in sixth spot on the Premiership table with nine points from seven games, will contest the annual Macufe Cup with Bloemfontein Celtic at Free State Stadium on Sunday.

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Article by: Robin-Duke Madlala

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