Mokwena explains Bucs’ struggles


Orlando Pirates have to really step up their game to challenge for League honours this season and coach Rulani Mokwena believes they would turn the corner.

Bucs are now a whopping 15 points behind the log leaders Kaizer Chiefs after 11 matches.

Mokwena’s charges went down 3-2 to Chiefs at FNB Stadium at the weekend and afterwards, he offered an explanation on why Pirates have won just three of their 11 Absa Premiership this season.

“We’ve worked very hard on trying to build our style of play – our game model and it started, like you’ve rightly mentioned, with the previous head coach (Micho Sredojevic),” alluded Mokwena.

Bucs players will have to pick each other up to perform well once again.

“The difficulty has just been about introducing the new players and trying to adapt to the style of play, the environment and to rebuild in a way – it’s a new team.

“So, we understand the process and we understand what happened with our team. We know why we are where we are and we know the transition that took place,” Mokwena argued.

“You know when you unfortunately have to let go of 15 players and you bring in 10 players, of course there’s an adaptation (process) that needs to take place,” he said.

“Of course big clubs are judged by results and we know that. We are not going to step down from that, because the moment we step down from that, we lose our status as a big club,” stated Mokwena.

Mokwena reckons that the club’s supporters understand the team’s situation.

The ex Mamelodi Sundowns assistant coach reckons that the technical team has the backing of the club’s management.

“But we are realistic and fortunately, our management understands football, and understands where we are and understands why we are where we are.

“And our supporters are football understanding people.

“But be that as it may, we’ve got to start turning these good performances into results,” Mokwena continued.

He’s buoyed by his belief that the Pirates players are doing everything they can to protect the integrity of the club.

“There’s a certain way that Orlando Pirates must lose football matches, but not by lying down and allowing opponents to bully them, and all of that.

“We don’t want to beat ourselves and when we lose, we lose to a better opponent… we don’t accept to be bullied over,” he said.

By Tiyani wa ka Mabasa

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