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Sports News of Tuesday, 21 April 2020


Competition for places has been our trump card this season - Richard Ofori

Ghanaian goalkeeper, Richard Ofori Ghanaian goalkeeper, Richard Ofori

Maritzburg United goalkeeper and skipper Richard Ofori claims competition for places in the team has been the driving force in side's improved performances this season.

Maritzburg were facing relegation last season until they survived in the play-offs to retain their premiership status.

They are lying 5th position on the league standings this term with 39 points, 9 points behind leaders Kaizer Chiefs after 26 matches played thus far.

The 26-year-old is content with Maritzburg's form this season after they struggled in the South African league last season.

"We suffered a lot last season, so this season the togetherness, the teamwork and the hard work has paid off for the team,” he told the club’s website.

"We didn't start very well. But when the coach spoke to us, we listened to what he had to say and we tried to do everything possible.

"For each and everyone there is good competition for places. So that makes us work hard to make the most of the chance the coach gives you.

“Because if you don't work hard, another player will be given the opportunity and he will deliver. So you need to push, the competition has really helped a lot.”

The Ghana goalkeeper also thanked the teeming fans of the club for their unflinching support throughout the season.

"The fans and the city as a whole have been great for the team. Many other clubs don't have what Maritzburg have in terms of fan base."

"It's very effective, you know how on Friday nights we need the support and they all come in their numbers.

"We know how much it means to them and without football it's very difficult and complicated.

"It’s [the coronavirus] affecting all of us, so we have to fight this together. We need to stay to together as a team, stay home and be safe, so that we can be healthy when things come to normal.

"At the end of the day, individuals can't fight it, we need to fight this together."

The former Wa All Stars shot-stopper is in the run for the 2019/20 South Africa Premier League Best Player award following his stellar performances.

Ofori has 10 clean sheets from 24 games in all competitions this season.