The Star Early Edition
I’m not going anywhere – Tinkler
Pirates boss is feeling the pressure but will not run away from the challenge
IAM no quitter, Eric Tinkler boldly stated, despite growing pressure for the coach to deliver at Orlando Pirates while a large axe looms over his head.
His friend Roger de Sa – the man who brought him to Pirates where Tinkler first served as his assistant, like he did at Bidvest Wits – said the same thing. He didn’t quit when the Ghost chanted that he must go or when they threw vuvuzelas at him at Moses Mabhida Stadium after a disappointing draw with AmaZulu. He bought himself time by reaching the final of the CAF Champions League where the club lost to Al-Ahly in November of 2014 in the final. Two months later De Sa handed in his resignation at the end of January.
Tinkler is in the same situation that his friend was in. He has had fans chant that he must go although he hasn’t been on the receiving end of any missiles. He also bought himself time by reaching the final of the CAF Confederation Cup which the club lost in the final. Now he must help Pirates claw their way out of the unfamiliar bottom half of the Absa Premiership which wasn’t helped by playing to a 1-1 draw with Platinum Stars on Saturday at Orlando Stadium.
“There is no chance of me resigning,” Tinkler said. “The journey (of my first head coach position) has been fantastic whether good or bad. It’s part of the learning curve and part of the reality of being a coach. You have to be able to take the good and the bad.
“I would prefer to be in a better situation than we’re in, in terms of our league form, but I know what type of squad I have. I know that we can turn our season around into something positive.”
If the Buccaneers are to do that, they will need to get three points when a struggling University of Pretoria visits them in Orlando on Wednesday. AmaTuks started what will be a hectic month for them on a positive note with a win over Jomo Cosmos, only their second victory in this campaign. That’s one less than Pirates who are just three points ahead of AmaTuks.
The last time the two sides met, AmaTuks pushed Pirates to extra-time in the Telkom Knockout where Ayanda Gcaba became the Soweto outfit’s hero with a last-minute goal.
The Pretoria outfit is one of three struggling sides Pirates will face this month with Maritzburg United and Jomo Cosmos to come after that before they conclude January with a meeting against their arch-rivals Kaizer Chiefs.
“One result can turn things around,” Tinkler said. “I need to continue believing that because the way I portray myself is obviously the way the players will respond. That’s very important.
“Obviously when you’re in the position we are in in the league, at the bottom, it’s extremely difficult to get out of it. But you have to have confidence and self-belief. As a player I was in a position like this on many occasions. I have that experience and I know what it takes to get out of this position.
“Do I feel the pressure? Obviously I feel the pressure. But no coach wants to fail. I came in this business looking to succeed. I came to this club to succeed and win trophies, but I feel the pressure.”