Pirates coach calls for introspection after flattering win over Chippa
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CAPE TOWN – The Orlando Pirates interim co-coach, Mandla Ncikazi, was a troubled man after his side's flattering come-from-behind 3-1 win over Chippa at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, in the Eastern Cape, on Saturday.
“I wish we could have started better, but I am grateful we got the result,” said Ncikazi after the game.
“If we can get a result with such a (average) performance, I can imagine if we play better than this, then the signs are positive.
"We were clumsy, but I understand the processes, and that we as a team are going through some transformation.
"There has been a change in leadership, and we can't run away from that. We're tweaking a few things but at the same time, we were struggling with scoring goals.
"For a team that conceded early in the match to come back and score three goals shows the team's fighting spirit and the teamwork. Though the game was not pleasing to the eye, it's only the early stages of the season.
"We knew how Gavin (Hunt) was going to set out his stalls. We knew he was going to play on the counter.
"I think we just failed to execute a simple defensive tactic. I am happy we made progress and we know what our deficiencies are.
"If the (opposition) team builds from the back and we counter-press, one of them (defenders) has to jump and join the attack. They (Chippa) do that very well.
"I just want us to improve a bit on possession and see Pirates imposing their game on opponents. I don't think we did that part well today. It's a work in progress."
Chippa United coach Gavin Hunt said the scoreline was no reflection of the match, adding it was another match they lost but could have won.
"The scoreline reads 3-1, but I mean a bit unfair. I think we had the best chances in the match today," said Hunt.
"We could have been 3-1 up ourselves. It is disappointing but obviously once we had to chase it, we were going to have a few problems. All in all, I thought we had the best chances. We had more than enough chances to win the game."
"We've got to defend better," he said.
"It's the old football adage. You've got to defend first. I think it's two games now we lost when we should never have lost.
"It's football. No one cares. We got to try and pick ourselves up. We had more than enough chances to win the game today."
Chippa are next in action in the Winelands, Western Cape, against joint log-leaders Stellenbosch, who with Pirates moved to the summit of the DStv Premiership standings after the weekend's wins. The match will be at the Danie Craven Stadium on Saturday evening.
Next Saturday afternoon, Pirates face a humdinger against champions Mamelodi Sundowns in Orlando.