Congolese star opens his Bucs account in Botswana

Sebola: It was key for Makusu to get off the mark

Sihle Ndebele Journalist
Jean-Marc Makusu Mundele has joined Orlando Pirates from Kinshasa club AS Vital
Jean-Marc Makusu Mundele has joined Orlando Pirates from Kinshasa club AS Vital
Image: Orlando Pirates

The goal Jean-Marc Makusu scored in Orlando Pirates’ 3-0 success against Botswana’s Jwaneng Galaxy in the first leg of the CAF Confed Cup play-off tie at the weekend will help the Congolese marksman to finally settle.

This is the view of erstwhile Pirates striker Andries Sebola. It was Makusu’s first goal at Pirates since linking up with the Soweto club on a season-long loan from Congolese giants AS Vita Club in November. Thulani Hlatshwayo grabbed his maiden Bucs goal as well, with Linda Mntambo also on target.

“That goal was important for Makusu. His confidence will be boosted big time. You saw the way he celebrated after scoring... that goal means a lot to him. I sense he was starting to worry. I strongly feel the boy will settle in now,’’ said Sebola, who was perceived as a super-sub during his Pirates days.

Winning the away leg by three unanswered goals means the Sea Robbers are certain to book their slot in the group phase of the competition, unless miracles happen in the return fixture scheduled for Orlando Stadium on Sunday (5pm). Pirates have no game until meeting Galaxy in the return tie.

Even with their commanding lead from the away leg, Sebola still wants his former club to go all out in the second leg in Soweto. He urged the Buccaneers to take a leaf out of the Mamelodi Sundowns' book when it comes to being competitive on the continent.

“The coach [Josef Zinnbauer] must still field his strongest possible line-up in the second leg. We must make a strong statement by being ruthless in these CAF competitions. On the continent you get respected by winning all the games. You must not be picky and say 'no, this game is not big because we've qualified'.  That is a poor mentality,’’ noted Sebola.

“You see Sundowns [the 2016 Champs League title-holders] are renowned throughout the continent now. Why? I think it’s because whenever they play these CAF games they give their all. Pirates must also do the same irrespective of the first leg’s big scoreline.’’

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