Stellenbosch FC coach Steve Barker was pleased with his sides overall performance to earn a point against Mamelodi Sundowns in the DStv Premiership on Saturday evening.
Stellies earned themselves a point after playing out to a 1-1 draw against the Brazilians at the Danie Craven Stadium when Lyle Lakay cancelled out Junior Mendieta’s first half penalty.
The draw sees Stellies remain in fourth place with 22 points after 14 games while Sundowns remain at the top of the DStv Premiership standings with 31 points after 13 matches.
“Obviously, the conditions didn’t make it easy for either team but I thought structurally and tactically. I thought we set-up really well. We defended sort of narrow, didn’t allow them the pockets of spaces that they pride on,” Barker told SuperSport TV.
“So we forced a lot of the balls out wide first half and we didn’t really give them that many opportunities, they looked a bit dangerous on one or two set-plays from Lakay and we looked dangerous on transition.
“Exactly the way we thought things would happen with their fullbacks getting high maybe we could get Ashley (Du Preez) in behind. We created a one v one which led to the penalty.
“And then the second half obviously the wind favoured them a bit more and I think a lot of pressure kept on building and obviously a great strike from Lakay.
“But all in all, I just think it was a really good team effort, stuck to the game plan, great commitment from the players, great attitude from the players and I think a well-deserved point,” he added.
Baxter added that he was pleased with the performances of debutants Athenkosi Mcaba and Solomon Letsoenyo against the Brazilians.
“I think our principle with the way we look at things doesn’t change much, but you know to give Athenkosi (Mcaba) a debut for me was really superb. A lot of good things for him to come,” he added.
“Solomon Letsoenyo the left-back applied himself really well. All in all, pleased yes we knew we needed a little bit of front-foot play if they did play into the pockets.
“So, the left and right centre-backs needed to come in and apply pressure which I thought they did really well so for me a good performance from the lads.
“It’s important that we continue and take this to the next games. Important that Wednesday at home against SuperSport (United) we apply ourselves again but hopefully with the weather conditions we can play a little bit more.”
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