South-Africa

Mlambo absence cost Pirates in Champions League, says Micho

2019-03-18 14:55
Xola Mlambo
Xola Mlambo (Gallo Images)
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Nemanja Vidic speaks openly about his prolific defensive partnership with Rio Ferdinand during their time at Manchester United.

Cape Town - Orlando Pirates coach Micho Sredojevic believes the injury to Xola Mlambo in the first half eventually caused the loss to Horoya last Saturday.

The influential play-maker went off in the first half and it appeared to affect the game especially in the heart of midfield.

The Guinean outfit took command and eventually went on to win 2-1 in Conakry this past weekend.

The result means the Sea Robbers bowed out of the CAF Champions League as the hosts, as well as Tunisia's Esperance, went through to the quarter-finals.

Speaking of losing Mlambo in the opening 45 minutes, 'Micho' said: "We had a wonderful first half, we started very well and had chances.

"We had situations where we had our opponents on the back foot. However, Xola Mlambo got injured we had to replace him.

"The Horoya coach (Patrice Neveu) also brought on a replacement to strengthen and tighten their defence, however, our midfield was shaken by the absence of Mlambo.

"It was a game of two halves, and it seemed like our players were affected by the weather, their body language was not good and we conceded the first goal which put us at a disadvantage as we had to risk more by going on the attack.

"When you do that, you have a chance to gain and also concede and that's what happened with the second goal. We threw more players forward, but it wasn't enough."

Bucs have just the Premiership to play for in 2018/19 and will continue their title challenge on 29 March when they take on Black Leopards at Orlando Stadium in Johannesburg.

 

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