Pirates edge out Platinum Stars in Maize Cup
Posted on Monday, August 15, 2016 - 16:13
Orlando Pirates played in their third pre-season tournament when they triumphed over the defending champions Platinum Stars in the Maize Cup this past Saturday at the Moruleng Stadium. After having lost two pre-season tournaments during this pre-season campaign, Head Coach Muhsin Ertugral was happy about getting a positive result ahead of the start of the season.
The two teams were evenly matched for the most part with much of the battle for dominance being fought through the centre of the park. However at the end of 90 minutes the match was still at a stalemate and went straight to penalties, where the Buccaneers clinched a 1-3 victory with Manyisa, Memela and Nkosi hitting the target. The story of the day was that of goalkeeper Felipe Ovono, who made two saves and guessed the right way for the third Platinum Stars miss, which went wide of goal.
Ertugral: “It is a nice addition to our pre-season campaign but the key focus for us coming to this match was the fact that we will be playing against yet another quality side in Platinum Stars. They are one of the top teams in the Absa Premiership so we knew that we would get an opportunity to further assess our strengths and weaknesses. We have been working on our playing patterns both offensively and defensively and we might not have scored during the open game but I am happy with the performance, especially in the second half.”
“We are not where we need to be; we are still a work-in-progress. We are on the way to building a team and that’s an important ingredient for success. We have to concentrate on the new players, the current players as well as the players who have left in the hopes that we will grow together as a team. It is not easy to build a team but through difficult matches in the pre-season we are on our way to becoming one.”
“We have our last pre-season camp starting at the High Performance Institute in Potchefstroom. I am happy that it will include the U23 players from the Rio Olympics who re-joined the team today, because we need to include them in our process of working on our positioning and fine-tuning our technical elements”.