‘Ghost’ some of the most demanding fans in the world‚ says Pirates coach

Orlando Pirates fans at Orlando Stadium in Soweto.
Orlando Pirates fans at Orlando Stadium in Soweto.
Image: ANTONIO MUCHAVE

Orlando Pirates’ supporters are among the most demanding in Africa and the world‚ coach Milutin Sredojevic has said‚ though they also recognise hard and good work‚ he added.

As Pirates made a welcome return to continental club football by guaranteeing second place in the Absa Premiership with their 4-0 thrashing of Bidvest Wits on Wednesday night‚ Sredojevic thanked his technical team.

He said his support staff have carried out their jobs as if they are Buccaneers' supporters.

But the coach said the biggest factor in Bucs turning around their 2016-17 season horribilus 11th-placed finish was Pirates’ real supporters‚ or “the Ghost”‚ as they are known.

The Buccaneers still have an outside chance of winning the PSL as they face Cape Town City at Cape Town Stadium on Saturday with a four-point deficit behind leaders Mamelodi Sundowns‚ who meet Ajax Cape Town at Lucas Moripe Stadium.

“Working here we are supporters. And we feel the vibe of supporters. And this is something uniting us to push in the same direction‚” Sredojevic said of his technical staff.

He continued: “Moreover I need to say that the support we have gotten from our supporters [pushes the team]. Because Orlando Pirates supporters are the most demanding maybe in Africa‚ and among the most demanding in the world.

“You cannot fool them. When you give your best they always recognise it.

“And as such I could not forget our spiritual owners. Our supporters have been the season injective [sic] factor that has pushed us to our best.

“We are still far from what we are supposed to be. But very happy regarding the road we have taken.”

Pirates return to a Cape Town Stadium that has not been a happy hunting ground this season.

They lost 3-0 there against Ajax in the league in January‚ and 1-0 against City in the Nedbank Cup last-16 in March.

“Cape Town City were supposed to be a contender for the top of the table. Unfortunately results have not gone their way‚” Sredojevic said of his sixth-placed opponents.

“I have the highest respect for coach Benni [McCarthy] and his team. We shall clash on Saturday and it is very hard to play against that team from all aspects.

“We are looking. We know that one detail will decide [the game]. You remember that one detail decided that last Nedbank Cup game.

“We are planning for anything possible‚ and for any [factor] possible within fair play that went their way last time‚ to go our way this time.”

The PSL’s last two rounds of matches

Saturday:

Bidvest Wits v AmaZulu (Bidvest Stadium‚ 3pm)

Mamelodi Sundowns v Ajax Cape Town (Lucas Moripe Stadium‚ 3pm)

Cape Town City v Orlando Pirates (Cape Town Stadium‚ 3pm)

Kaizer Chiefs v Maritzburg United (FNB Stadium‚ 3pm)

Chippa United v SuperSport United (Sisa Dukashe Stadium‚ 3pm)

Free State Stars v Polokwane City (Goble Park‚ 3pm)

Baroka FC v Bloemfontein Celtic (Peter Mokaba Stadium‚ 3pm)

Lamontville Golden Arrows v Platinum Stars (Princess Magogo Stadium‚ 3pm)

Saturday‚ May 12:

Polokwane City v Chippa United (Old Peter Mokaba Stadium‚ 3pm)

AmaZulu v Cape Town City (King Zwelithini Stadium‚ 3pm)

Bloemfontein Celtic v Mamelodi Sundowns (Dr Molemela Stadium‚ 3pm)

Platinum Stars v Bidvest Wits (Royal Bafokeng Stadium‚ 3pm)

SuperSport United v Baroka FC (Lucas Moripe Stadium‚ 3pm)

Orlando Pirates v Free State Stars (Orlando Stadium‚ 3pm)

Ajax Cape Town v Kaizer Chiefs (Cape Town Stadium‚ 3pm)

Maritzburg United v Lamontville Golden Arrows (Harry Gwala Stadium‚ 3pm)

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