Milutin Sredojevic: Orlando Pirates players showed character against resilient AmaZulu

The well-travelled trainer lauded his charges' fighting spirit as they kept their hopes of winning the PSL title alive

Orlando Pirates head coach Milutin 'Micho' Sredojevic was full of praise for his players following their hard-fought win over AmaZulu FC on Sunday afternoon.

The Buccaneers came back from a goal down to defeat Usuthu 2-1 in a Premier Soccer League (PSL) match which was played at the King Zwelithini Stadium in Durban.

Despite the win, Pirates remained second on the league standings - three points behind the leaders Mamelodi Sundowns, who have a game in hand.

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"We were playing against a very competitive team which was not looking to sit back and defend," Sredojevic told the media after the game.

Mabhuti Khenyeza gave AmaZulu an early lead, but Musa Nyatama and Thabo Qalinge netted for Pirates, who are hoping to win their first major trophy since 2014.

"They were very dangerous on counter attacks. Since we had a game on Wednesday, my players were tired a bit. So, AmaZulu were fresh and they caught us and scored after a quick counter attack," he continued.

"We did not panic. We knew that we had to equalize by playing accurate passes in the final third. The boys showed character and we had a situation where Thembinkosi Lorch managed to beat the goalkeeper, who pulled him down," Micho said.

"For me it should have been a penalty. The keeper should have been red carded because it was a goal scoring opportunity. But we will respect the match referee's decision. We were awarded a free-kick in a promising area and we managed to score from the set-piece," he explained.

The 48-year-old praised his players for showing character against a stubborn Usuthu side who remained 11th on the league standings after losing.

"We regrouped at half-time. We had to improve by creating more chances and convert them in the second-half. The boys showed what the club badge means to them and they showed some respect to the fans here in Durban and those, who were watching on Television," he said.

"They gave their all and we got repaid with Qalinge's goal that gave us the victory. I would like to praise the players' character. We have made a huge step forward as a team by winning here. The victory has boosted the team's confidence. I believe that we have succeeded in making our fans happy," he concluded.

Pirates' next league game will be against Bidvest Wits at the Orlando Stadium on Wednesday, the 25th of April 2018.