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COMMENT: Micho Sredojevic is making his Orlando Pirates job very difficult after Nedbank Cup exit

22:03 WAT 26/01/2019
Micho Sredojevic of Orlando Pirates August 2018
The Sea Robbers missed out on their third domestic trophy of the season, and this means more pressure on coach Milutin Sredojevic

Orlando Pirates were knocked out of the 2019 Nedbank Cup by Black Leopards after a gruelling 120 minutes of football at the Thohoyandou Stadium.

The Buccaneers have now failed to win any of the first three domestic trophies on offer thus far - the MTN8, Telkom Knockout and now the Nedbank Cup. 

The trophy drought continues for the Buccaneers, but fingers would point directly at Milutin Sredojevic, who was brought back to try and win major trophies. 

He may be targeting the league title as well as the Caf Champions League, but the truth is that Pirates are still far away from dominating local football.  

Sredojevic appeared to be heading in the right direction, but in recent times, he has been chopping and changing his winning team - something which could be the real reason behind the team's failure to heal the souls of Pirates supporters. 

As things stand, Pirates don't have a winning team as they rely heavily on individual players to win matches, especially the likes of Xola Mlambo, Justin Shonga, Vincent Pule and Thembinkosi Lorch among other players. 

The three players are not always on form, and they struggle to impose themselves in important games, then Pirates fail dismally even against relatively smaller teams. 

Some would argue that fatigue is beginning to creep in, while others would blame their recent slump to wholesale changes made to the technical team by the club. 

The issue of fatigue may be a genuine argument, especially looking at the number of matches that Pirates have had to play this season. 

But given the size as well as the quality in the current squad, Sredojevic and his technical team should have been well aware even before the start of the season. 

There was a lack of preparation to get all the players on the same level of fitness as the others.

The likes of Thabo Matlaba, Ntsikelelo Nyauza, Mpho Makola, Abel Mabaso, Thabo Qalinge and Luvuyo Memela among others, are some of the players who have been overlooked and therefore cannot really be relied upon this season. 

When Sredojevic was asked about certain players who had been 'forgotten' at the club, he said that there were many matches to come, but the truth is he has done very little to gradually introduce them so that when those who have been carrying the team don't perform, then they could easily be replaced. 

Again Micho should accept the responsibility, especially looking at the numbers of games they have drawn and lost this season where Pirates were strong favourites to win. 

Furthermore, having three 'coaches' isn't something that would always yield positive results for all the clubs. 

It worked for Mamelodi Sundowns with Pitso Mosimane, Manqoba Mngqithi, Rulani Mokwena heading the technical team, but for Pirates players, this appears to be more confusing to the players, especially after the arrival of Fadlu Davids. 

This is not to insinuate that the three coaches don't know what they are doing, but their philosophies might be totally different - and this could mean more years of waiting before Pirates can taste success again. 

Against Leopards, there was a stage when all three coaches were up on their feet barking instructions to players; it will take time for the players to get used to the new technical team setup. 

While this factor might be out of Sredojevic's control, the fact that he's the head coach means that he will take the fall for anything that goes wrong at Pirates, especially when it comes to results and trophies or a lack thereof.