Orlando Pirates coach Milutin Sredojevic praised his side’s fighting spirit after extending their unbeaten run in the Absa Premiership to seven matches.
The Buccaneers managed to claim a 2-1 victory over Free State Stars at the Orlando Stadium on Saturday through goals from Musa Nyatama and Justin Shonga.
The win sees the Soweto giants stretch their lead over Mamelodi Sundowns at the top of the league standings to six points, although Pitso Mosimane’s side have two games in hand.
‘In the first half we played the way we wanted to play. We knew that the opponent was going to play with a reinforced defence. It was very hard to penetrate them, but at least we possessed the ball and created some chances that were not converted,’ Sredojevic told SuperSport TV after the game.
‘At half-time we saw what our problems were and allowed the fullbacks to go high up the field providing that edge that was the missing factor in the first half.
‘We have done exactly this with quick-fire goals with a two-goal lead that guaranteed us peaceful ending of the match. But how is it in football, we had chances and scored a goal that was disallowed that I believe should not have been disallowed, but that’s the decision of the referee we have to respect.
‘We had a situation where 2-0 is the most dangerous result, 2-1 brings you on the back foot, you’re fearing not to lose what you already have. I want to give credit to the boys, they fought. This is their third match in seven days, let us put it on that account that they have been tired in the last 15 minutes. But three points are three points, we shall pick it up and move on.’
Sredojevic described his side’s last three fixtures as the ‘three doors of hell’ before they reached the ‘doors of heaven’ against Ea Lla Koto over the weekend.
‘I told them we need to open the three doors of hell. It was not easy playing against [Bidvest] Wits, winning against Black Leopards, and today to win. I need to give credit to the players,’ he added.
‘Now we’re seeing on the horizon the doors of heaven. But still feet on the ground, respect all the opponents we’ll play against, Maritzburg [United] fighting relegation, Cape Town [City] and the last match against Polokwane City here.
‘The mathematics is simple; ours is to take every match as it comes and take every match as a cup final.’
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