Ajax Cape Town dismantled by Black Leopards' fighting spirit

Jan Versleijen blamed a lack of intensity in his players' performance as his side surrendered a one goal lead and eventually lost in injury time against Black Leopards
Ajax Cape Town looked destined to dampen their relegation qualms during their PSL encounter against Black Leopards on Tuesday night, but it was not to be for the Urban Warriors as they succumbed to a 2-1 defeat in Polokwane.

Read about what happened during Ajax's 2-1 loss at the Old Peter Mokaba Stadium on Tuesday night.

Jan Versleijen's charges took a one-nil lead into the break and were looking confident enough to hold onto their slim advantage, but Black Leopards displayed their tenacity in the second half by dismantling Ajax's defence on multiple occasions.  

The Ajax Cape Town coach admitted that his side could not deal with Black Leopard's newfound confidence and spirit. The Urban Warriors lost their lead thanks to a powerful strike from Micheal Nkambule and a late winner from Rodney Ramagalela meant they left Polokwane without a point.

“One goal wouldn't be enough because we knew Black Leopards were fighting for their last chance, and that's what they did,” Versleijen said after the match.

“Like I said before the game, this would be a physical game and we needed to deal with that. In the first half we did that, but in the second half we didn't.

"We let them come at us too much, we didn't put them under enough pressure, and up-front we couldn't keep the ball, which means you're always under pressure.

“They were fighting for their last chance and they put 200 per cent effort into this game, and we couldn't deal with the pressure. And that's what you have to do when you play relegation football.”

Black Leopards coach Sunday Chidzambga could only praise his team's display after the vital win, which sees his side draw level on points with Ajax Cape Town.

“In the first half we were not fighting, but in the second half we put up a spirited performance and I’m very pleased with the boys,” Chidzambga.

“At halftime I told the players to attack them, to go at them, but not to forget to defend. They did that and we got the three points.”