Soccer fever grips Bay
Former Orlando Pirates’ star striker Jerry Sikhosana says the Buccaneers have ticked all the right boxes and should walk away with the Telkom Knockout trophy on Saturday.
The Bucs play Baroka FC in the final at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.
The man who went by the nickname “Legs of Thunder” in his playing days, and who spent most of his footballing career with the Buccaneers, said although it would be a closely contested fixture, but he felt Pirates would come through 2-1 on Saturday.
“But you can never rule out Baroka,” he warned.
“They [Baroka] have reached the final on merit and they have quality in their team so for me I think it is going to be a really closely contested encounter in Port Elizabeth.”
Pirates are appearing in their ninth TKO final, but have claimed victory only once – in 2011. The Orlando side have not won a trophy since lifting the Nedbank Cup in May 2014.
“I think it’s an opportunity for Pirates to make sure that they stake their claim again to be one of the glory teams when it comes to cup competitions,” Sikhosana said.
“Especially as they have won it just once in all these years and it’s almost four years since they have lifted a trophy,” he added.
“So I think the pressure is on them.
“But the pressure that I know the chairman is going to be putting on that Pirates team is to make sure that they win this trophy to make sure the supporters are happy.
“That is the only way that they can please their supporters, who are so hard to please.”
Pirates have been consistent this season and, as a result, are Absa Premiership log leaders.
They are unbeaten in their last three fixtures.
“Pirates are convincing. “They are playing good football and they are firing on all cylinders and the attack that they have is great,” Sikhosana said.
“I am impressed with Justin Shonga. A lot of people criticise him because his finishing is not that good.
“But the work rate that he brings along with him is something else. He needs to calm his head when he gets inside the important areas – in terms of scoring goals.
“Also Thembinkosi Lorch has been on song. The forwards and midfielders are coming on board.
“Its going to be up to Orlando Pirates to make sure they take this one, or else just give it to Baroka,” Sikhosana said.
It’s almost four years since they lifted a trophy Jerry Sikhosana FORMER PIRATES PLAYER
IN FORM: Thembinkosi Lorch will be aiming to take Orlando Pirates to glory in the Telkom Knockout final on Saturday