Sundowns made a stupid mistake and got punished, laments Manqoba Mngqithi

Masandawana's assistant coach heaped praise on the opposition following his side's progression into the next round of the Nedbank Cup

Mamelodi Sundowns assistant coach Manqoba Mngqithi lamented the way his side conceded an early goal against ABC Motsepe League outfit EC Bees in a Nedbank Cup Last 16 encounter played on Tuesday night.

Not many would have predicted the kind of performance that the Eastern Cape-based outfit produced on the night, which needed two second half goals from Hlompho Kekana and Thapelo Morena to turn the tie in the home side’s favour.

However, following the match, Mngqithi, who took over the reins in the absence of head coach Pitso Mosimane, was not all too pleased in the way his side conceded the goal.  

“First half, it should’ve been a different story,” Mngqithi told SuperSport TV after the game.

“We made a stupid mistake and got punished immediately. From there, we created a lot of good chances to take the lead," Mngqithi added.

EC Bees certainly made it difficult for Sundowns who needed to dig deep to progress, leading the former Golden Arrows coach to heap praise on the opposition and goalscorer Joseph Chikila in particular.

“No wonder the goalkeeper is the man of the match because he kept them in the game. It’s always scary when a small team leads during that time because now we start thinking if we go all out they are going to catch us on a counter-attack and their striker Chikila is very good,” he explained.

“But we knew with time they will tire and that is why at the end they were short. Honestly speaking, like I said before, it's a very good team," he said.

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Morena came off the bench as he replaced Anele Ngcongca in the first half, and Mngqithi has explained all his substitutions during the clash.

 “We just felt after scoring the second, we needed someone more mobile that’s why we brought on Keletso (Makgalwa),” he said.

“The first one of Anele was a forced one because of a groin injury. We then brought on Gaston (Sirino) to try and lift the team with more mobility in midfield,” he concluded.