Pirates defeated AmaTuks 3 – 1 on Sunday, a performance made possible due to the teams fighting quality and Roger De Sa's encouragement during the game
Once Pirates went 1 – 0 down at Loftus Versveld on Sunday the team did not look disheartened and began to play the kind of football their pedigree demands.
AmaTuks matched Pirates throughout the match, yet the Buccaneers disposed of the league’s surprise package with two fine goals from Collins Mbesuma and an Andile Jali penalty kick.
Man of the match Sifiso Myeni believes that the team’s fight back originated from coach Roger De Sa’s words during a water break and half time.
The player spoke after the game and said, “We knew we were going to fight hard in this game. We conceded early and we all said 'you know what it is not over'.
“When we came out from the changing room the coach said we have to work as a team and work hard and we did that.
The coach knows me very well and he just told me to play my natural game. We spoke as a team during the water break and worked out what Tuks were doing.”
Played in incredibly hot conditions, Pirates did not handle the early heat and conceded first, but were able to fight back and win the game. Myeni credited the team’s hard work and teamwork and De Sa echoed his words.
He spoke about what he told his players to do during the game, “Basically to carry on playing the way we were, we wanted to keep our shape and play the way we can.
“It was heavy for both sides. They caught us napping a bit with a top goal. We reacted pretty quickly and got back 1 – 1. We had control of the game but in the last 20 minutes we were poor.
“We have gained bit of confidence now after these goals. I don’t remember Pirates scoring three goals in a game for a long time.”
AmaTuks took the early lead but faltered against the quality Pirates outfit. Mbesuma two goals were seemingly unstoppable and coach Steve Barker believes the side will bounce back from their defeat.
“I think the players gave their best so we have got to give credit to them. Once we started chasing the game it opened up and they scored two goals,” Barker said after the game.
“I’ve got full confidence the players will bounce back, I believe there wasn’t too much difference between the sides. We’ve got to keep our heads up and bounce back.”