Jonevret on the brink of becoming the first Pirates coach to finish outside the top eight in the PSL era
The record books might not tell the whole story‚ but Kjell Jonevret is facing the dubious distinction of being recognised as the man who presided over Orlando Pirates when they finished outside the top eight for the first time in the club’s history in the PSL era.
The Buccaneers are in 11th place with one match remaining‚ three points behind Ajax Cape Town who sit in 8th position.
But the reality is Pirates were already sinking when the then little-known Swede was asked to steer their ship to calmer waters in February.
Wednesday night's goalless draw with the Urban Warriors at Orlando Stadium means that their fate of finishing in the top eight isn’t in their hands.
Pirates need to beat Golden Arrows in their last game and hope that Ajax loses and Platinum Stars doesn’t win.
“I can’t take responsibility for everything off course‚” Jonevret said.
“The whole club and the coaches have to sit down and talk about what happened before I was there‚ look at all the players who left us and those who came in.
"Is there anything that we could have done better?
"The thing that I worked on the most since I arrived was to ensure that the team is more stable.
"We couldn’t lose games 6-0‚ 6-1 or whatever. I think that’s in order now. But the offensive part of the game hasn’t been good enough.
“We create chances in every game. It’s not many games where our opponents create more chances than us.
"But we have to score those chances. That’s my job to improve that. But you also have to look at how the squad looks like‚ the players we have and how to use them.
"We have two or three really good offensive players who have been out since I arrived for different reasons.
"We want to make our supporters happy. We are thinking a little bit about pre-season‚ to start over on a clean slate.”
The Buccaneers were already in turmoil when the Swedish coach arrived in February.
Muhsin Ertugral resigned on live TV after their 6-1 loss to SuperSport United in November last year.
Interim coach Augusto Palacios almost had a heart attack after the club lost 6-0 to Mamelodi Sundowns and an angry mob of fans stormed the pitch trying to attack their own players.
The club chairman Irvin Khoza was forced to act and brought Jonevret to steady things. The club’s league troubles haven’t subsided.
Their appearance in the Nedbank Cup semifinal is their saving grace in the year that Pirates will celebrate its 80th anniversary.
Jonevret has called on the club to use this time to do some self-introspection.
“We have to sit down and see how to go forward‚” Jonevret said.
“I don’t know how they do things here. It’s not just up to me. But we have to sit down and talk a little bit about what has been good this season and what has been poor and what we can do in the future.
"It’s a process. We haven’t sat down (with management) a lot because there have been too many games. All my focus has been to try and win as many games as possible.” - TMG Digital/TMG Sport