Telkom Cup, walala wasala. It was second placed Golden Arrows versus third placed Orlando Pirates.
The buccaneers came to the game hoping that the Telkom cup would renew inspiration from the players and it did just that.
Taking a quick look at last seasons Telkom Cup for the buccaneers, they beat AmaTuks by 2 goals to 1, then they beat Maritzburg United by 2 goals to 0 in the quarters. Before meeting arch-rivals Kaizer Chiefs where the game ended deadlocked at nil–nil, then going on to lose 6 – 5 at a packed FNB Stadium when Siyabonga Sangweni missed the decisive penalty. Pirates would like to better the semi-final finish this season.
The positive so far this season has been the Buccaneers are one of three teams that have not lost in the league this season
The positive so far this season has been the Buccaneers are one of three teams that have not lost in the league this season along with Wits and Sundowns. The negative was that the Sea Robbers have not won a game in the last 3 outings before winning this previous Sunday.
They came up against an inform Arrows that are second after 6 games. Having won 4, drawn 1 and only losing 1 game.
Looking at the line up, an obvious choice in Brighton Mhlongo did very well, I thought his positioning and handling was amazing today. He gets better by the game. I felt the goal he conceded was just a well taken set pieces that would beat even the best keeper in the world.
In defense, Muhsin Ertuğral selected a different back four from the last game. Sikhakhane started ahead of Mobara at right back, while Gyimah started ahead of Chabalala to partner Jele at center back. The defense looked solid even though they conceded but Ertuğral would be happy they didn’t concede in open play. I thought the dealt well with counter attack play from Arrows and the pace threat Arrows threw at them. The way Matlaba timed his runs to join the attack was also key for the defence to be solid today.
I thought the midfield was dynamic and enterprising today because the two wingers that started the game kept the defence guessing. I thought they varied their game well. That’s where Pirates won the game. Sometimes using the pace, skill, trickery and at times playing the quick the one to Ndoro upfront. But credit must also go to Manyisa for quick thinking when he played a corner kick to Makola but what a thunderous shot from Mpho to open the scoring. Manyisa was more offensive today and I think he is slowly getting back to the Ace we all know and love. A moment of individual brilliance from Memela resulted in a lovely goal from a sole run which saw him go past five players before finishing with his weaker right foot.
Upfront the sniper himself Ndoro did well again even though he didn’t score, I thought he made intelligent runs and he linked well with Makola and the rest of the midfielders. Today Ndoro was partnered with Makola who was playing in the number 10 role and I think it’s Makola’s best position.
I thought the buccaneers played with a good intensity and tactically coach Ertuğral got it right. Mpho Makola won man of the match, I thought he was brilliant but the next best player was Memela for me. Walala Wasala, the buccaneers proceed to the next round.