Another disappointing result for Orlando Pirates has left caretaker coach Rhulani Mokwena with much work to do after the club crashed out of the MTN8 quarterfinals at the Orlando Stadium on Saturday.
The Buccaneers lost 1-0 to Highlands Park – their third consecutive defeat since the beginning of the 2019/20 season.
It wasn’t a good start for Mokwena, who is at the Pirates helm following Milutin Sredojevic’s shock resignation.
Mokwena was understandably disappointed with the result, but had no excuses.
“Congratulations to coach Owen and Highlands Park on the victory and progressing to the semifinals. It was a difficult match, but reflecting on the state we are currently in one can tell there is a lot that has happened in the last 48 hours. So, no excuses, it’s a bitter pill to swallow, but we have to try to move on and improve,” said Mokwena.
“All we have to do now is stick together and try to raise our performance levels because in the last three matches we have not played the way we would expect Orlando Pirates to play.”
Speaking about being entrusted with the job of leading the Buccaneers, Mokwena added that this comes with a huge responsibility and one always has to put the team first.
“After three straight losses, I think it would be unwise of me to even start thinking about myself. I think when you’re being called to serve you always have to try and think less of yourself and try to put the team first.
“And at this moment, it becomes difficult to even detach myself from what the team is going through.
“As much as I can explain and elaborate what it means for myself, I think as a club we are feeling a lot – regardless of what I feel and regardless of the honour bestowed on me to lead an institution like this.”