CAPE TOWN – Orlando Pirates coach Milutin ‘Micho’ Sredojevic has labelled his team’s defence in conceding a second goal to Cape Town City as “unacceptable”.
Sredojevic couldn’t hide his disappointment after watching the Buccaneers squander a 2-0 lead against the Citizens, with Ayanda Patosi grabbing a brace within nine minutes for a 2-2 stalemate.
After Augustine Mulenga and Innocent Maela put Pirates up by two goals just 16 minutes in at Orlando Stadium, it looked like it could turn into a rout for the Capetonians.
But Patosi produced a brilliant left-footed volley to pull one back, before the former Bafana Bafana midfielder threaded his free kick through a multitude of defenders for the equaliser.
“We had total dominance. Leading 2-0, having a chance of burying the game.
“And instead of burying the game, we allowed them to score that one goal that put us under an element – I want to call it pressure – and thinking about that,” Sredojevic told SuperSport TV.
“And once more, it has been shown that 2-0 is the most dangerous result in the game of football. Simply, it was unacceptable for our opponents to catch us on the counters.
“To allow that amount of ‘out-numberings’, that is exactly where we paid the price. We prepared ourselves to not make the set-pieces in areas from where they can endanger us, but we did exactly that.
“On the other side, we had clear-cut chances to bury the game and had them on the hook. But they went off the hook. It is a lesson that at 2-0, we cannot have space and time to be complacent and relax.
“We learnt the lesson in a hard way.”
What frustrated the Serbian mentor even more was the fact that he had spoken to his players at halftime about not taking it easy in the second half.
Now Pirates will hope to return to winning ways against Baroka FC in Polokwane on Saturday (3pm kickoff).
“We insisted at halftime that we can in no way be complacent, and looking to score a third put the game beyond their reach. But from when we conceded the first goal, blood entered into our head,” Sredojevic said.
“We lost concentration at the set-piece, closing off the vision of the goalkeeper for the side-kick (free kick that led to the second goal), which is unacceptable.
“(The poor defence) is something that is very hard to explain. We have agreed, but have not followed the agreement. We have to be tight in defence, but have to go back to the drawing board and pull up our socks.”