Johannesburg – After a number of misfires in front of goal, Orlando Pirates coach Vladimir Vermezovic said his club was fortunate to have escaped with a 2-1 victory against SuperSport United in their MTN8 encounter on Saturday evening.
“It is usually the case in football that if you miss many opportunities, you deserve to lose the match,” said Vermezovic after the match.
“Fortunately we were not punished this time around, but maybe some other day we will be punished,” Vermezovic said.
The Soweto heavyweights marched into the semi-final of the competition courtesy of first-half goals from Daine Klate and Kermit Erasmus, with David Mathebula pulling one back for the visiting Matsatsantsa in the 68th minute.
The Buccaneers had plenty opportunities to increase their advantage, but were not able to deliver in front of goal.
“It was supposed to be an easy game for us after going up by two goals. We created a couple of chances which were easier to score than they were to miss.”
The Serbian-born tactician was relieved to kick off the season on a positive note, after his side joined Wits and Platinum Stars in the last four of the competition.
“At the end of the day, it is still early stages of the season. I must be satisfied with the performance of the players and we have to keep working hard.”
SuperSport coach Cavin Johnson was disappointed with the efforts of his charges.
“We weren't good enough. We didn't play our usual game and didn't take control of the ball. We were poor in the first half. We didn't come to the party,” Johnson said.
Although displeased by the two goals conceded, Johnson said Pirates could have won by more.
“We gave them two goals which I feel they didn't deserve to score. In the second-half Pirates could have scored four or five goals. They had good chances to score.”
Having handed new signings Clayton Daniels, Michael Morton and Lerato Manzini their debuts against Pirates, Johnson had the difficult task getting the team to gel.
“Out of the 11 players, I think five of our players had off days and weren't at their best. The only thing we really did well was the goal we scored. We were just not there in other areas.”
As Johnson attempted to devise a plan going ahead, he acknowledged aspects of their game which needed improvement.
“We couldn't put together six passes together, I think the most we had was three.
“The problem is not in their feet, the problem is in their heads. These players knew the game plan and I wonder why they froze when it was time to deliver on match day.” – Sapa