Tshepo Ntsoelengoe
Football Writer
2 minute read
2 Mar 2018
9:54 am

Micho urges Pirates to bring their A-game against Chiefs

Tshepo Ntsoelengoe

Orlando Pirates coach Micho Sredojevic has challenged his players to unlock a solid Kaizer Chiefs back four and beat their goalkeeping talisman Itumeleng Khune when the sides meet in an Absa Premiership clash at FNB Stadium on Saturday.

Milutin Sredojevic , coach of Orlando Pirates with Steve Komphela, coach of Kaizer Chiefs during the Absa Premiership 2017/18 Press Conference at PSL Offices,. (Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix)

Sredojevic’s charges have enjoyed a good run since the beginning of the year which has lifted them to second in the standings with 36 points – the Buccaneers have scored 15 goals in their last seven games.

Ahead of this game, Sredojevic acknowledges that Chiefs have been very good in defence, having conceded only three league goals in seven games since the New Year and says it will be a good test for his players.

“We have been looking at things like how to score between smaller poles against three goalkeepers in training in order to be able to beat one of the three best goalkeepers on the continent in Itumeleng Khune,” said the Bucs coach.

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“I challenge our players to show that if we are really that good in the second round of the league, let us do it against the best defence. Let’s be dominant, be effective and let’s have a much better conversion rate.

“Whatever we do in training and in practice matches we do in the games. And now when you repeat something several times it becomes automatic.

“We are driving towards automatism, and instead of thinking about missing chances, we look at the mathematical aspect of how many chances we have created,” he added.

Having won their last match 4-2 against Chippa United, the Pirates coach reckons the victory was a big morale-booster heading to the Chiefs game, but Sredojevic admitted that playing the Glamour Boys will be a totally different game.

“It is good to win because it gives you self-assurance and belief you can continue winning. But it will be a different ball-game when we play Chiefs. We are looking forward to it and the fact that we are second and third will spice up the game and unlock the legs of the players. I’m expecting a lot of goals,” he said.

The recent history of this derby, however, says otherwise, with goals few and far between in league meetings between Pirates and Chiefs in the last few seasons. In the last six league meetings between the two teams, there have been just eight goals scored, with four of those in one match, a 3-1 win for Pirates in October 2015. The five other games have ended in draws, three of them goalless.

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