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Riveiro stands by his off-form team, and decisions

CAF loss puts pressure on Bucs ahead of cup final

Sihle Ndebele Journalist
Relebohile Mofokeng of Orlando Pirates and Doctor David of Jwaneng Galaxy during the CAF Champions League, 2nd preliminary round at Orlando Stadium on Friday
Relebohile Mofokeng of Orlando Pirates and Doctor David of Jwaneng Galaxy during the CAF Champions League, 2nd preliminary round at Orlando Stadium on Friday
Image: Gallo Images/Lefty Shivambu

Orlando Pirates coach Jose Riveiro took full responsibility after his side was dumped out of the CAF Champions League by less-fancied Botswana side Jwaneng Galaxy at Orlando Stadium on Friday.

Jwaneng, who are mentored by SA-born Morena Ramolebodi, won 5-4 on penalties to earn their berth in the group phase of the competition.

Pirates had won this second leg of the Champions League preliminary round 1-0 before the game went to penalties as the away leg had been won by Jwaneng by the same scoreline. Pirates’ focus is now on the MTN8 final against Mamelodi Sundowns at Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday (6pm).

“We are a very strong group and we know how to take care of ourselves in these circumstances. I am the man responsible... it’s my responsibility. They [the players] did everything to be in the next round and I couldn’t help them to get a better result. We are going to take care of each other because we really know what’s coming,” Riveiro said.

Relebohile Mofokeng, the youngest at 18 years old, was the only player to miss a penalty. Riveiro refused to explain why the youngster was chosen to take a spot-kick ahead of seniors.

“Everybody is going to play an important role from now on to make sure that everyone feels safe and protected for the future. When we win, we do it as a group and when we lose, we do it as a group as well,” Riveiro said.

He also explained his decision to take off goalkeeper Sipho Chaine for Richard Ofori ahead of penalties. Ofori failed to save a single penalty.

“Richard Ofori came in because he’s a specialist on penalties. Unfortunately, he couldn’t save any of the five [penalties]. And that’s why Jwaneng is in the group stages,” Riveiro said.

“It doesn’t mean we don’t trust Sipho Chaine. We thought in the current circumstances, Richard could give us extra in that specific moment of the game.”


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