Absa Premiership

How long Pirates coaches last after their first match v Chiefs

2019-10-31 10:18
Rhulani Mokwena
Rhulani Mokwena (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Orlando Pirates coach Rhulani Mokwena will take charge of his first Soweto derby fixture against Kaizer Chiefs when the two sides meet in the Telkom Knockout quarter-finals on Saturday.

The match is scheduled for 15:00 at Moses Mabhida Stadium. 

The Buccaneers are in desperate need of a boost while Chiefs have been flying high as the PSL fixture list mounts.

But there might be some glimmer of hope for Mokwena.

According to Extra Time Media, Pirates have gone five years without silverware and recent history suggests beating Amakhosi could be a step towards ending the drought.

Bucs have won seven major trophies in the last 16 years, shared between four different coaches. Of those, three won the Soweto derby on their first attempt after taking charge - Ruud Krol, Júlio César Leal, and Augusto Palacios.

Vladimir Vermezovic is the only Orlando Pirates coach during that time to lift silverware, the 2014 Nedbank Cup, after losing his first derby at the helm. He’s also the only Pirates coach in the last 13 years to lose his first two competitive Soweto Derbies. He resigned two and a half months after the second, a 1-0 loss in the MTN8 final.

First Soweto derby in charge for Orlando Pirates coaches

Soweto derby stats

Mokwena will face Chiefs again in the league a week after the Telkom Knockout quarter-final.

Whatever happens over the weekend, he will be hoping to emulate his predecessor, Milutin Sredojevic, across those two fixtures.

'Micho' is the most successful Pirates coach in Soweto derbies over the last 13 years, winning three and drawing three over two different coaches spells.

No other Pirates coach in this period has gone unbeaten in six Soweto derbies. Roger de Sá came close with one win and four draws in five matches. Krol, meanwhile, went unbeaten for his first four Soweto derbies but lost three of the following six.

Orlando Pirates coaches and their Soweto derby records

Soweto derby stats

Coaching in the PSL is a notoriously fickle business. Pirates have gone through 11 mentors in the last 13 years. But, in recent times at least, a loss in this a Soweto derby debut hasn't meant the end of the road.

Since the start of the 2006-07 season, the only coaches who lost their opening Soweto derbies are Eric Tinkler and Vermezovic. Tinkler lasted 572 days in the job after the defeat and Vermezovic 263.

Days in charge after first Soweto derby

Soweto derby stats

As for PSL top scorers coming to the party, well, don't get your hopes up.

Soweto derbies are known for being cagey encounters, but Micho managed to get his team firing on all cylinders.

In six Soweto derbies where he took charge, Pirates scored nine goals, conceding five. Altogether, the Buccaneers have scored 36 goals and shipped 32 in their last 37 competitive games against Kaizer Chiefs.

Soweto derby goals: Orlando Pirates’ coaches record

Soweto derby stats

*Note: All datasets take into account coaches from 2006 to 2019.


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Wednesday, 08 April 2020
Cape Town City v Mamelodi Sundowns, Cape Town Stadium 19:30
Friday, 10 April 2020
Maritzburg United v Wits, Harry Gwala Stadium 20:00
Saturday, 11 April 2020
Polokwane City v Highlands Park, Old Peter Mokaba Stadium 15:00
Black Leopards v SuperSport United, Thohoyandou Stadium 15:00
Mamelodi Sundowns v Golden Arrows, Lucas Moripe Stadium 18:00
AmaZulu v Bloemfontein Celtic, King Zwelithini Stadium 20:15
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

And the 2019/20 Absa Premiership champions will be ... ?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2019/20 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.