Orlando Pirates coach Micho Sredojevic rued Happy Jele’s failure to convert a penalty in their 1-0 loss to SuperSport United, which dented their Absa Premiership title hopes at the Mbombela Stadium on Wednesday night.
Ronwen Williams saved Happy Jele’s spot-kick after Evans Rusike was judged to have handled the ball inside the box in the 76th minute, as Clayton Daniels 65th-minute header proved the difference.
Defeat sees Bucs remain third in the league with 32 points, four points behind leaders Bidvest Wits after 20 games while trailing second-placed Mamelodi Sundowns by two points – Downs have two games in hand on Pirates and Wits.
“We threw everything at them with five attackers upfront and keeping the ball very well and from the product of that domination, we got a penalty.
“It would have changed the whole complexion of the game and would have turned things around for us,” said the Bucs coach.
“However, the resolute defending of our opponents did not allow us to create many chances. Those we had we did not convert. So unfortunately, we lost the game.
“It’s a big setback for us but now we must pull ourselves up, stop thinking about this match and think about our next game against AmaZulu.”
The Bucs coach knows dropping three points is a major blow for his side in their quest for the league championship, as they bid to catch up with the teams at the top. However, he added that they will continue to focus on themselves.
“We are not thinking about anyone else except ourselves, we prepared very well for this game. We also knew that one moment of brilliance would decide this match. We didn’t have a good first half, having many turnovers when we were supposed to keep the ball and we allowed our opponents to counter-attack,” said Sredojevic.
The Buccaneers will now be looking to get back to winning ways when they host Usuthu at the Orlando Stadium on Saturday night.