Micho Sredojevic: We have changed the mindset of Orlando Pirates players

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The Buccaneers in the race for the league title, but Micho has continuously played down his team's chances to ease the pressure on his players

Orlando Pirates head coach Mulitun Sredojevic has explained his team's resurgence following a dismal 2016/17 season which saw them finish outside the top eight. 

Speaking to Goal, Sredojevic said the technical team changed the players' mindset when he first arrived, adding that those who were there before he took the job have began to think differently about football. 

Players such as Mpho Makola, Jackson Mabokgwane and Happy Jele among others have really upped their game since the arrival of Micho, who took over from Kjell Jonevret at the beginning of the season.

According to Sredojevic, said last season's pain of being on the receiving is still playing in the minds of many who were there, and that it continues to keep them on their toes to never go back again.     

Last season, Pirates finished 11th on the log, winning just six of their 30 league matches and conceding a whopping 40 goals.  

They also suffered two heavy defeats - the 6-1 loss to SuperSport United in November 2016 as well as their 6-0 defeat to Mamelodi Sundowns in February 2017. 

"Those players that were here with Orlando Pirates last year, we have turned their mindset upside down - they are totally thinking different about football and moving with the times," Sredojevic told Goal.

"We want them to think the way we think about football, and this is exactly what has brought the change. Last season's pain of being on the receiving end is still keeping them on their toes, to work hard and never go back to these bad times they went through," he said.       

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Sredojevic also explained why Thamsanqa Sangweni hasn't been playing for the club in recent months.

The former AmaZulu and Sundowns midfielder joined the Buccaneers from Chippa United at the beginning of the season, but he has found game time hard to come by under the Serbian mentor.   

"He's one of the midfielders competing for a place in central midfield. The moment he satisfies the standards and the criteria that we are demanding, then he will be in contention. As things stand, it's up to him to fight for his place," concluded Sangweni.  

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