Former Orlando Pirates midfielder Helman Mkhalele has praised the Soweto giants for dishing out a spectacle in the Soweto Derby on Saturday afternoon.
Although, the Buccaneers claimed a 2-1 win over Kaizer Chiefs , 'Midnight Express' said the quality and the brand of football displayed by both teams were a good advert for South African football.
“It was a good advert for South African football. It had the goals, the excitement and also in terms of tactical organisation, and the mindset showed they were prepared,” Mkhalele told Goal.
The Bafana Bafana legend also shared his thoughts on the performances of the likes of Khama Billiat and Leonardo Castro, who were under pressure to live up to expectations.
Prior to the clash, Pirates assistant coach Rulani Mokwena looked to get into the minds of some players and staff within the Chiefs camp.
“I think it all boils down how to handle it (pressure) as a player, football has pressure to the players, so it's up to the players themselves and team to work on how can they respond to a pressured environment like that of yesterday,” continued the legend.
“Despite what was said by coach Rulani, Billiat responded well and scored in his first Derby and that lifted his morale whilst the same cannot be said about Castro, he didn't deliver based on expectations, but it could be because of fitness since he hasn't played for a while,” he reacted.
Moreover, 1996 Africa Cup of Nations winner said Pirates are enjoying a good run over their rivals because of the players and the technical team's ability to plan and prepare for big games.
“I think it's everybody starting from the management who is contributing to Pirates' dominance over Chiefs, and in this regard credit must go to the players and technical team for preparing well,” Mkhalele said.
“I believe this is their second win over Chiefs (back-to-back) and they are beginning to understand and master the demands of the Derby whilst (Giovanni) Solinas is new to Chiefs and his first Soweto Derby,” Mkhalele continued .
“He might have played some derbies in his career, but this one is different because these are the two top teams in the country,” he responded.
“I am sure he wanted to win, but it didn't work out and it's just a matter of preparing better next time especially after what was said by coach Rulani during the week about his predecessor and the level of Chiefs are at now... it was difficult for him to focus, but I am not sure what was on his mind, how it affected their preparations,” he concluded.