Orlando Pirates coach Rulani Mokwena: ANESH DEBIKY / GALLO IMAGES
Orlando Pirates coach Rulani Mokwena: ANESH DEBIKY / GALLO IMAGES

With only nine points from a possible 21 in the Premiership so far‚ Orlando Pirates coach Rulani Mokwena admits they are battling.

Pirates have been inconsistent since the start of the campaign, with two wins and as many defeats‚ while three matches ended in draws to leave them seven points adrift of early pacesetters Kaizer Chiefs.

Last weekend at Orlando Stadium‚ Pirates let a 3-2 lead over Cape Town City slip in the closing stages to settle for a 3-3 draw at home that left them eighth on the standings.

“We are swimming against the tide … but we have shown a lot of character during this difficult period‚” Mokwena said‚ adding that Bucs may have to change the balance of the team.

“If you look at our organisational forms‚ we are playing too many draws because we put a lot more effort on the offensive. Maybe we have to go back and try to create a little bit more balance in our game forms.

“We know where our Achilles heel is, and we have to try find balance in our game. We want to play with the ball but we are too far from each other … and if you want to be ball-oriented you must be more compact to press better.

“It was much better in the second half … because the lines were a little bit closer to each other‚ but we as the technical team must support the players.”

Some Pirates fans have expressed their frustration as the Buccaneers are yet to win two league matches on the bounce this season but Mokwena says he is not feeling the pressure.

“Pressure‚ no — it’s more passion than anything. I think the supporters can see that we are giving the best we can and unfortunately when it’s your turn, it’s your turn and you just have to see yourself through.

“That is what we have to do — we have to be brave and we don’t feel sorry for ourselves. We just have to be strong and keep going.”

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