John Maduka defends Kaizer Chiefs amid penalties, red cards criticism

John Maduka defends Kaizer Chiefs amid penalties, red cards criticism

Royal AM coach John Maduka has argued that Kaizer Chiefs cannot be blamed for referees’ awarding of red cards and penalties in their favour this season.

Chiefs have come under mass scrutiny with statistics showing 10 penalties have been awarded in their favour, while enjoying a one-man advantage in nine of their matches so far this season.

However, Maduka has defended that Amakhosi cannot be blamed for referees’ decisions, while admitting that his charges must be mentally prepared for such a scenario should it come to be in their Nedbank Cup quarterfinal clash on Sunday.

"Ok, but at the end of the day, you can't can't blame Chiefs for playing with an advantage because, as the end of the day, the decision is not made by them," Maduka told reporters.

"What they do is to play the game, so I've asked our players to focus. And that happens in football, whereby there can be red cards and penalties, and all those things.

"But we must be able to deal with that as professionals, and yes, our players should be ready mentally and make sure that, if you want to go to the next round [of the Nedbank Cup], you're prepared for everything.

"So that is part of the areas that we have to prepare for, that if anything happens – that can happen at any time with any team and, against any team, we must be able to deal with that."

Maduka has conceded their defensive record as their Achilles heel, with the team having conceded nine goals in their last three matches, but he is optimistic this will be rectified come this weekend’s crucial knockout fixture.

"I mean, we've been conceding a lot of goals, which is not good and we can't continue conceding goals. The goals we concede when we're supposed to be [tight], so we have to prepare in that area [because] it's a bit of a concern for us," he added.

"Each and every game, especially the [last] three of four games we've played we've conceded, and we have to change that. So, we're working very hard and that's why you can see we are trying different combinations at the back to see how it goes.

"It looked better against Stellenbosch... It's very important, for us to win the game against Kaizer Chiefs, we have to defend very, very well."