‘Mi­cho’ has a point to prove

The Mercury - - SPORT - Njab­ulo Ngidi

OR­LANDO Pi­rates coach Mi­lutin “Mi­cho” Sre­do­je­vic be­lieves that two slaps will keep the Buccaneers in line in their high-pro­file clash with Mamelodi Sun­downs at Or­lando Sta­dium to­mor­row.

This match will see Sun­downs, who are on the wane af­ter reach­ing the high­est peak in African football by win­ning the CAF Cham­pi­ons League, come up against a Pi­rates’ team that’s on the rise af­ter sink­ing to a de­press­ing low in the last cam­paign as they recorded their worst fin­ish in the PSL-era.

The Brazil­ians had a hand in putting Pi­rates in that mis­er­able po­si­tion, thump­ing the Buccaneers 6-0 in their last meet­ing.

“In football, im­pos­si­ble is noth­ing and any­thing is pos­si­ble,” Sre­do­je­vic said. “I know that from the years I have spent as a player, coach and pas­sion­ate lover of the game. In life, it is im­por­tant to have some­thing guid­ing you that doesn’t al­low you to stray.

“That 6-0 will not be a fac­tor in this match. But in the same mo­ment we need to have two slaps. One slap from this side to re­mind us that ‘look, in football it is pos­si­ble to con­cede six’. The sec­ond slap from the other side will di­rect us to for­get that score­line, play with con­fi­dence know­ing that we are good and that we can be much bet­ter.”

Sre­do­je­vic con­tin­ued, “If I was a player and you told me to eat the grass at Or­lando Sta­dium I would eat grass to prove my­self be­cause we have a lot to prove in­di­vid­u­ally and as a team. That’s what is driv­ing us, not fear of 6-0.”

While Pi­rates have been im­prov­ing their con­fi­dence, Sun­downs are at an all-time low. The Brazil­ians have lost

THIS WEEK’S FIX­TURES

Polok­wane City . v Kaizer Chiefs . . . Su­perS­port Utd . v Ar­rows . . . . . . . . Bloem Celtic . . . . v Mar­itzburg Utd . Plat­inum Stars . . v Ajax CT . . . . . . . . AmaZulu ....... vBaroka ......... Pi­rates . . . . . . . . . v Sun­downs . . . . . Wits . . . . . . . . . . . v Chippa United Baroka FC . . . . 9 Ar­rows ....... 9 Pi­rates ....... 9 Chiefs ....... 9 CT City FC . . . 8 Bloem Celtic . 8 FSS­tars ...... 8 Chippa Utd . . 9 AmaZulu FC. . 8 Sun­downs . . . 6 Mar­itzburg . . . 7 Polok­wane . . . 9 AjaxCT ...... 8 Wits ......... 8 Su­perS­port. . . 4 Plat. Stars . . . . 9 4 3 3 3 4 3 3 2 3 3 2 2 2 2 2 0 4 6 5 4 0 3 2 5 2 0 3 3 2 2 1 4 1 0 1 2 4 2 3 2 3 3 2 4 4 4 1 5

F12 14 7 10 8 7 10 7 11 8 5 12 7 6 5 4 7 5 8 6 5 2 7 3 7 1 7 0 9 1 7 0 12 -1 7 1 4 1 15 -3 11 -4 11 -5 4 1 12 -8 . 16 15 14 13 12 12 11 11 11 9 9 9 8 8 7 4

three suc­ces­sive matches for the first time un­der coach Pitso Mosi­mane. The third de­feat saw them elim­i­nated in the first round of the Telkom Knock­out by Chippa United.

Sre­do­je­vic heads into this match cau­tiously.

“We need to re­spect that the matches Sun­downs lost aren’t a re­flec­tion of the qual­ity they have as a team and as in­di­vid­u­als,” Sre­do­je­vic said. “In football, some days are yours and oth­ers aren’t. It wasn’t their day in those three games. They are like wounded lions who will come look­ing to bounce back.

“That’s their prob­lem. We will only think about our­selves and our prob­lems. We want to up our game. They are wounded but we need to find the salt to put on that wound.”

PIC­TURE: BACKPAGEPIX

Chiefs will hope their mo­men­tum grows along­side the form of their man of the mo­ment, Ge­orge Maluleka. Amakhosi visit Polok­wane for their PSL match tonight.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.