JOHANNESBURG - Black Leopards’ coach Joel Masutha refuses to read too much into Orlando Pirates’ recent misfortunes ahead of their Absa Premiership clash at Peter Mokaba Stadium this evening (kick-off 7:30pm).
In their last two encounters, Pirates’ title aspirations took a huge dent as they suffered back-to-back defeats against Bidvest Wits and Bloemfontein Celtic, respectively. Masutha is wary that they might be the first of the come-back victims, if they are not vigilant.
“We can’t dwell on their past games," Masutha said. “We know that they are a team that’s of quality and danger. On any day, they can really give you a hard-time if you are not at your best. They’ve got a super squad and technical coaches. I mean, everything about them is super.
"We know that at the end of the season, they’ll be up there. But what is important for us, is to go out there and play our normal football. We are well prepared for them but most importantly, the boys should just enjoy themselves."
Meanwhile, Lidoda Duvha have had a decent start in their return to top-flight. They’ve bagged five points out of a possible nine. Their potent attack, led by Mwape Musonda, is what makes them a competitive outfit.
“As rookies, I think we’ve had a decent start to the season," Masutha said. “In the last quarter of the game against Chippa United, I think we let the foot off the pedal a bit. But, what you do unto others will also be done unto you, just like we also came back against Highlands Park late in the game."
The ineligibility of their fortress, Thohoyandou Stadium, to host Premiership fixtures this season has been their only set-back thus far. While it is under review, they’ve had to make use of Peter Mokaba Stadium for their home encounters. However, Masutha is adamant that they’ll continue to grind out results regardless of where they are located.
🚨🚨MATCH DAY ALERT 🚨🚨
☠ @lidodaduvha vs @orlandopirates
📅 28 August 2018
🏟 Peter Mokaba Stadium
🎟🎟 Computicket ➡️ https://t.co/B34TXQyIyc
🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥#hashamulilo #AbsaPremiership pic.twitter.com/v37OZ9yS6T
“That matter is beyond us really," Masutha explained. “We must just continue to perform at any given platform. After all, we train in Polokwane, so playing at Peter Mokaba Stadium is not a train-smash really. We are still at home. We always have to focus on the positives, even if we have to travel six hours for a home game, we’ll do that."