Stellenbosch Football Club

Barker reflects on hard-fought draw against Chippa United

Football Dstv Premiership 2023/24 Stellenbosch Fc V Chippa United King Zwelithini Stadium

Stellenbosch FC head coach Steve Barker has reflected on a tough DStv Premiership encounter against Chippa United.

Stellenbosch were made to work hard for a share of the spoils on Friday night after playing out a 1-1 draw against Chippa United at the Danie Craven Stadium, where Antonio van Wyk and Craig Martin were the goal scorers for their respective teams.

DStv Premiership match report: Stellenbosch FC 1-1 Chippa United

“It was a tough encounter and I think a lot of credit must go to Chippa United because they came out with a lot of energy,” Barker said.

“They have a good team. They’ve got some nice size up-front, in midfield, and with their two centre-backs, they have some good tricky wingers and full-backs who like to get forward, and a big goalkeeper at the back.

“They made it difficult for us and we obviously weren’t at our most fluid, and I think Oscarine [Masuluke] kept us in the game in the beginning with some big, big saves to deny the opposition.

“Then we got the goal with [Antonio] Van Wyk scoring and we were probably a little bit fortunate to come in at half-time with a 1-0 lead because I think a draw was probably a bit more reflective of what happened in the half.

“That gave us something to hold onto though, but there were a couple of things we weren’t doing too well. We weren’t picking up the second ball from [Elmo] Kambindu, who is a handful and was causing us problems.

“Often from set-pieces, they were really strong and causing problems there, so we came out in the second half with the aim to be solid for the first fifteen minutes and with the hope that if we were still leading, they would come at us and we would have chances in transition.

“The red card [for Ismaël Touré] did change the complexion of the game though, and made it a bit more difficult, so we had to make one or two substitutes.

“Unfortunately, [Andre] de Jong had to come off which then took away our ability to play between the lines and receive the ball in pockets.

“It then became a bit of a defensive effort in the last 30-35 minutes with the hope of a set-piece or transition goal, and we had one or two moments like Jayden [Adams’] header near the end.

“We had to repel a lot of their attacks and Oscarine again pulled off another big save for us at the end of the match.

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“It wasn’t our best performance and credit must go to the opposition, but there are positives to draw from the match like holding onto our unbeaten record and getting points under difficult circumstances.

“We’re starting to show that resilience and it’s time now from Tuesday onwards, against Cape Town City, that we get back to playing better and with more quality and that we start asking more questions.

“There is a bit of work to be done before that match but it’s a well-earned point for us against Chippa United considering what happened.”