Orlando Pirates winger Riyaad Norodien insists he will fight for game time at the Buccaneers after participating in the Carling Black Label Champions Cup.
Norodien, who is used to playing against modest crowds whilst still at Ajax Cape Town, shared his experience playing at Soccer City in front of 85000 supporters, reports the Orlando Pirates website.
‘Wow, what an experience,’ Norodien said.
‘The buzz of being on the pitch in front of so many supporters was great. To be honest, there were butterflies in my stomach when I was about to come on to the pitch but I just told myself to calm down and just do what I enjoy doing, which is to play football.’
The 21-year old went on to say that his first instinct since coming on as a second half substitute was to try and get the Buccaneers back into the match and at the same time introduce himself as a pirates player.
‘Coming on when the team is losing is never easy so automatically my mind was tuned to try and get that equaliser but at the same time I was conscious of the fact that this was my first introduction to the supporters,’ he added.
‘As a player, you want to have the backing of the supporters … the sooner that happens, the easier things become and you also gain more confidence.’
Norodien insists that after getting a taste of being a Buccaneers, his aim is now to fight to get more game time under his belt.
‘The excitement of the derby was great. To hear that deafening roar of our supporters when the team walked to the centre of the pitch to salute the crowd … that moment gave me Goosebumps,’ the 21-year-old said.
‘I told Jackson (Mabokgwane) who was sitting next to me on the bench that I wanted to be the one saluting our fans next time. The Derby is unlike any other game, it’s very emotional … emotional on the coaches, players and fans alike.’
On Wednesday, August 24 Pirates get their PSL season underway as host Golden Arrows.
The match at the Orlando Stadium kicks off at 19:30.
Image Orlando Pirates website