Cape Town - Cape Town City coach Benni McCarthy believes improving defensive standards in the Absa Premiership is partly the reason why strikers struggle to score enough goals.
In the previous campaign, Mamelodi Sundowns forward Percy Tau and Polokwane City striker Rodney Ramagalela tied for the Golden Boot with just 11 league strikes-a-piece.
The total is the second lowest in the Absa Premiership's history after Bernard Parker managed to win the gong with just 10 goals in 2013/14 in the colours of Kaizer Chiefs.
Nonetheless, McCarthy takes the view that defences in the South African top flight deserve credit, though there is room for improvement in scoring goals across the nation.
Bafana Bafana's all-time leading scorer told Kick-Off: "I think teams have strengthened their defence and defenders are more organised now. They are quick, so it's not easy for strikers to score.
"It's quick of us to say strikers aren't scoring but we forget that there's (Itumeleng) Khune (Chiefs), you know your Ronwen Williams (SuperSport United), your Sage Stephens (CT City). Like these goalkeepers have done amazingly in between the sticks.
"Also defenders, they have upped their game so strikers have to work hard. So it's not so easy in scoring goals as it used to be in my time. I think that is also a factor. And you have to also commend teams for beefing up their defence to be more secure and make it difficult for strikers.
"But in general strikers of today are afraid of the goals. They are afraid of the goals, they don't want to score goals I think. And now it's becoming more difficult."