Thabo Qalinge’s skills excite Orlando Pirates coach Eric Tinkler
Posted: 31 January 2016 Time: 11:08
Orlando Pirates coach, Eric Tinkler says individual skills like those shown by Thabo Qalinge in yesterday’s Soweto Derby lifts the crowd and the team.
Qalinge sent the Soccer City crowd into a frenzy when he chest-trapped the ball before lifting it onto his shoulders, then brought it down and continued the play with a sweet touch with his feet.
The former Mpumalanga Black Aces midfielder was starting his first Soweto Derby as Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs drew 1-1.
“We know his skill. It’s fantastic,” Tinkler said after the match.
“Actually we showed the video of him doing the same thing during the CAF Confederation Cup at the hotel [before the match].
“Sometimes you need to have that skill – you saw that when the game started, both sides looked nervy and players were losing the ball cheaply until Yeye [Letsholonyane] stood on the ball. The fans got behind the players and it seemed to lift the spirit of the Chiefs players and they started to play.”
Tinkler says he enjoys watching Qalinge doing his tricks on the ball – as long he is doing them at the right time, in the right place for the benefit of the whole team.
“It’s about the timing – when you do it, how you do it, and why you do it. That is important,” Tinkler explains.
The 24-year-old Qalinge was arguably Pirates’ best player yesterday, and was unfortunate when his neat free-kick that led to Pirates scoring was ruled out as he took it before the referee was ready. Chiefs opened the scoring a few minutes later.