Stuart Baxter believes Chiefs' decision to go for the win in Cape Town backfired, as Ajax Cape Town scored the winner with a well-executed counter-attack
Chiefs' decision to play three centre-backs seemed to backfire during the match, as the defending PSL champions struggled to breakdown a stoical Urban Warriors' defence.
Stuart Baxter decided to shift his approach late on, but his attempts to win the game ended in disarray, as Tashreeq Morris struck his first top-flight goal in the 87th minute to earn a priceless win for Ajax Cape Town.
"I'm naturally disappointed with the result. We wanted to make a positive change to try and change the game, but we got caught in a transition," Baxter said after the match.
"To be honest we thought about that, and that's why we were playing with three centre-backs, and let the wide players go forward. We got caught on the transition, where we knew they'd be a danger, but we wanted to go and try win the game.
Asked whether this season will be more difficult for Chiefs, Baxter maintained that every side has improved during the off-season, meaning the defence of the PSL crown will only be the more strenuous for AmaKhosi.
"Every season is different. It would be very nice if you could just mow down everybody and no one had a chance, but people have strengthened their teams this year.
"People have got new coaches, people know more about us, people are just picking up their own game."
Baxter bemoaned Chiefs lack of composure and praised Ajax Cape Town's tactics, saying that his decision to go for the win may have been his team's downfall.
"I think we created chances, both playing with four at the back and with three at the back. I think we created chances, but weren't very composed with our finishing, and our final ball.
"At the same time, Ajax also created their own chances, so at 0-0 it was like should we go on and try win this game, or go home happy with a point.
"In retrospect, maybe I should've closed up shop and gone home happy with the point. But I don't think we're like that, and I don't think the club wants me to play like that.
"We knew that we're coming to a place where they enjoy playing on this field, and they enjoy the extra support that we bring with us, and part of their game plan was to defend deep and try and frustrate us, and hit us on counter-plays, and that's always a good tactic, especially if you have players that will utilize that.
"We knew what we were coming to, and I said before we knew the job we had on our hands, but at times we just didn't show the quality for the ninety minutes that we needed to, to come to a place like this and win the game."