Pirates coach rejects fitness claims

A bevy of trophies over last seasons must prove their physical ability

Roger de Sa has rejected claims his side might not be fit enough to take command of matches and are struggling to close out games because they get tired.

The new Orlando Pirates coach poured cold water on a suggestion from a reporter after the win over Ajax Cape Town that his club took too long to finish off the game because of they were not fit enough.

“It is going to happen that when you are leading 1-0 but your confidence is not all there that you will retreat a little further back than you should,” De Sa explained.

“This was not our instruction (to the players) but it is a natural thing to do. It’s a natural tendency to drop off

“I’ve only been at the club 10 days and so I can’t work too much on fitness. I just got to believe in the work that was done in the past before by other people, people that won the championship two years in a row. I can’t question their ability and given what the club has won over the last two years I reckon the players fitness must be pretty good.”

Pirates’ 2-0 win over Ajax on Wednesday ended a run of disappointing form for the club that had seen them score just once in their preceding five games.

De Sa has now won his first two games in charge and taken the club to second place in the Premier Soccer League standings.