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Benni On Downs Loss, Laments Ref & Pitch

AmaZulu coach Benni McCarthy has reacted to his side’s defeat to Mamelodi Sundowns in their DStv Premiership opener on Friday, questioning the referee and criticising the pitch.

Last season’s runners’ up traveled to Loftus Versfeld to face the defending champions but lost 1-0 after Themba Zwane scored a first-half penalty.

McCarthy praised the efforts of his team, but was not happy with two crucial referee decisions as well as the pitch.

“Fantastic opening game to the season, what a challenge. Two fantastic teams I think,” he told SuperSport TV after the game.

“That’s why they show why they are championship quality, why they’ve won the league because they have that gal. They don’t need a lot of chances to win the games, they get probably a gifted penalty I would say.

“Then they stick it away and then they manage. But I can’t fault my players for anything. We did exactly what we set out to do.

“The pitch let us down a little bit. It was soft underneath and the players didn’t understand where the right foot, a lot of us were slipping all over the show. Sometimes we slipped in the most dangerous areas which allowed Sundowns to come in.

“If I could do it over again, I wouldn’t change anything. We were probably unfortunate not to get a penalty with the hand ball on Domingo, which was in the box, and if it was hands on the side ok, but it was hands up.

“Maybe the ref need to have a look at it again.”

AmaZulu will continue their 2021/22 campaign with a home fixture against Swallows FC on Wednesday.