ORLANDO Pirates coach Rhulani Mokwena is not losing any sleep over his side’s apparent lack of killer instinct in front of goal in their latest match.
Bucs missed an avalanche of goal-scoring chances in their Telkom Knockout last-16 clash against rookies Stellenbosch FC at the Orlando Stadium on Saturday.
Nevertheless, they managed to sneak past Stellies 1-0 thanks to Thembinkosi Lorch’s late strike to book their berth in the quater-finals of the Ziwa Mo.
Mokwena said he was not worried about the number of chances his side wasted and would rather focus on the positives.
Having conceded seven goals in their last two league matches, Mokwena was more pleased with his team’s solid defensive showing than he was concerned about them misfiring in front of goal.
“I’ll never throw my players under the bus,” said Mokwena.
“I’m proud of the Pirates players. They are honest, they do their best that they can in every game. We will go back and practice more to improve the team and that’s what we always focus on. I don’t’ know any other solution except for hard work.
“I’m one person who tries to live on positives. Frustrated? (With the missed chances) No. I’m happy with the consistency. We have been creating chances in each match so it was nothing new.
“But we kept a clean sheet, that’s the positive I would like to focus on. We maintained good defensive stability and those are the building blocks. There are more positives than negatives. The team is creating so many chances. Someone is bound to be on the receiving end of those chances. But at the moment, we are happy we did not concede, that is the most important thing.”
Mokwena hopes that their victory over Stellies will help them turn the corner following a difficult period which saw them win just two of their 11 matches so far this season in all competitions.
They will resume their Absa Premiership schedule on Saturday (3.30pm) with a second date against Stellies at Cape Town Stadium.
“We know we still have a lot of work to do,” admitted Mokwena.
“I hope the problem of conceding is over but in football, there are no certain guarantees. What I do know, though, is that if we continue to defend the way we did against Stellenbosch then we are headed in the right direction.”