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Pirates defeat ‘unacceptable’, says coach

Orlando Pirates coach Vladimir Vermezovic remains dissatisfied with his team’s form following their 2-1 defeat to Maritzburg United at FNB Stadium on Tuesday.

“I don’t understand how a team with so much experience can concede a goal in the second minute and 45th minute, before half-time. That’s unacceptable for me,” Vermezovic said.

Pirates head into the much-anticipated clash against Kaizer Chiefs on the back foot after they were trumped at home.

To the dismay of the Buccaneers’ fans, the team was beaten by United, with Mohammed Anas scoring a first-half brace.

Kermit Erasmus’s strike in the 33rd minute failed to spur the team on to victory.

After the defeat, Vermezovic was pelted with objects by a disgruntled group of supporters at the stadium calling for his dismissal. Chants of “you must go” echoed as the Serbian-born coach left the field after the Buccaneers suffered their fourth loss of the season in the league.

Vermezovic lamented the thankless job of a coach. “It’s always the coach who is guilty when things go wrong,” he said.

“When things are good it is the players. This was a game with too many mistakes. We must go on and focus on the next game. We have a few days to prepare now for the Chiefs game.”

Vermezovic said he would not be consumed by the demands of disillusioned fans and would focus on preparing for the derby.

“I’m doing my job in my way and if it is not enough, then somebody must decide it. So we will see what happens.

“It’s normal for supporters to be unhappy when the team loses the game. The first thing that comes to their mind is the coach.”

Pirates ‘running around aimlessly’ 
Anas combined early with his teammates for the opening goal in the second minute of play. 

During the match, Pirates appeared to be running around aimlessly. While they continued to probe, the visitors were happy to sit back and frustrate the opposition. 

The Soweto giants continued to graft, with their efforts finally paying off when the front line combined for the equaliser. Minutes later Anas stole Pirates’ thunder with another goal that ensured United went into the break on top.

United coach Steve Komphela said the win could be attributed to his team executing their tactical master plan to perfection. “We could not expose our defenders to one-on-ones. Each time their wingers got the ball, we reinforced the defence,” Komphela said.

The former Bafana Bafana mentor praised his players’ mental strength and fitness.

“You cannot defend for so long without the right physical conditioning because it takes a strong mental capacity to do so, which is why all along we have been striving for a strong mind,” Khompela said.

“The players showed a willingness to bounce back.” – Sapa

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