De Sa: Part of the job

The Pi­rates coach had to duck for cover as sup­port­ers threw bot­tles

Weekend Witness - - Sport - LLOYD BURNARD PSL foot­ball

OR­LANDO Pi­rates coach Roger de Sa had to duck for cover as sup­port­ers of the club launched plas­tic bot­tles at him fol­low­ing his side’s 1­1 PSL draw against AmaZulu on Thurs­day night.

It was a mo­ment that had op­po­si­tion coach Craig Rosslee em­bar­rassed. “You never want to see th­ese kinds of things hap­pen. It is not ac­cept­able,” the Usuthu boss said af­ter the match.

But for De Sa, who was es­corted off the field by se­cu­rity and po­lice, deal­ing with such be­hav­iour is part of the job when you man­age a club of Pi­rates’ stature.

“There are al­ways a cou­ple of brave guys who throw things from a dis­tance,” said De Sa with a wry smile.

“It’s never go­ing to change. You’re al­ways go­ing to get that from a cou­ple of guys who come out of the pub and watch a foot­ball match.”

Pi­rates, who were com­ing off the back of a dis­ap­point­ing 2­1 loss at home to Su­perS­port United last weekend, were waste­ful in front of the goal on Thurs­day and had more than enough op­por­tu­ni­ties to win the game. It was enough to anger the sup­port­ers, who waited for the coach un­til af­ter he had his on­field tele­vi­sion in­ter­views.

“You saw how many passes I gave away and how many chances I missed, but that is the way it goes in South African foot­ball,” said the un­der­fire man­ager.

“It is al­most a level of en­ti­tle­ment. They have to win ev­ery game. But AmaZulu also want to win the game. It’s not like we go out there to miss. We try our best and we work ev­ery day. It’s foot­ball ed­u­ca­tion, I would imag­ine, or a lack of.”

It doesn’t get any eas­ier for De Sa and Pi­rates, as they con­tinue to catch­up on the rest of the league in terms of fixtures, fol­low­ing their par­tic­i­pa­tion in last year’s Caf Cham­pi­ons League.

Bucs play no fewer than six PSL matches in Fe­bru­ary — five of which are away from home — and how De Sa man­ages his play­ers through that con­gested pe­riod will prove cru­cial to his ti­tle as­pi­ra­tions. “We’ll have to ro­tate a bit more and rest a few play­ers. We can’t keep go­ing with the same 11. It’s go­ing to be end­to­end stuff right up un­til mid­May,” said De Sa.

“Right now, our fit­ness is pretty good and we’re happy with that. I think we have enough depth to keep up the stan­dard of foot­ball.”

On the prob­lem of fin­ish­ing, De Sa would not be drawn into com­ment­ing on whether a deal for Lehlo­honolo Ma­joro, who has been heav­ily linked with the club, has been con­firmed.

“I can’t spec­u­late on what kind of a dif­fer­ence he would make be­cause he is not here,” he said. “We want all our strik­ers to score goals, but some­times they don’t. We’ll only know if he comes.”

Pi­rates host Ajax Cape Town at Or­lando Sta­dium on Mon­day night.


Michael Mor­ton says he hasn’t signed a pre­con­tract with Su­perS­port United, and that his main fo­cus is en­sur­ing the top flight sur­vival of Mar­itzburg United.

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