News Live Scores
Cape Town City v Orlando Pirates

COMMENT: Will Orlando Pirates players crack under pressure?

7:05 PM MYT 03/05/2019
Xola Mlambo, Alfred Ndengane, Musa Nyatama & Linda Mntambo, Orlando Pirates, January 2019
Goal discusses whether or not Bucs can deal with the pressure that comes with pushing for the league title as they prepare to face Cape Town City

Premier Soccer League (PSL) giants Orlando Pirates find themselves in a familiar situation to that of April 2018.

Once again, it is Mamelodi Sundowns, who are hot on their heels and Cape Town City, who stands between them and taking a step closer to winning the PSL title.

Bucs know that victories over Cape Town City and Polokwane City in their last two league games will see them clinch the title provided they maintain goal-difference superiority over Sundowns.

The pressure is mounting on Bucs as the season reaches its business end and they will need to shoulder the weight of expectations as they look to clinch their first league trophy since 2012.

This is Pirates' best chance of winning the title with the destiny in their own hands.

This then begs the question as to whether or not Pirates players will crack under pressure.

The current Bucs team is made up of a relatively experienced group of players and those who are looking to establish themselves in the top flight.

Players like Wayne Sandilands, Thabo Matlaba, Happy Jele, Asavela Mbekile, Xola Mlambo, Ben Motshwari, Vincent Pule and Mpho Makola have all won the PSL title.

However, only Matlaba and Jele were part of the Bucs team which won the trophy in 2012, before helping the Soweto giants lift the Nedbank Cup two years later.

It is time for the above-mentioned players to step up to the plate and help the likes of Innocent Maela, Justin Shonga, and Thembinkosi Lorch handle the pressure that comes with applying the final push for the title.

It is imperative for the players to take the games in their stride at this stage of the season while embracing the pressure that comes with pushing for the most coveted trophy in the country.

Milutin Sredojevic is an accomplished coach who has won league titles in Uganda, Ethiopia and Sudan, but he is yet to win a major trophy in South Africa.

The Serbian tactician needs to find a way to divert the spotlight away from his players, who should also be comfortable with the pressure.

Once players play without the pressure, Pirates can be able to concentrate on the task at hand and deliver.