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Augusto Palacios rejects claims that Orlando Pirates rely solely on Tendai Ndoro

Posted: 14 December 2016 Time: 17:03

Orlando Pirates caretaker coach Augusto Palacios has dismissed the notion that talisman Tendai Ndoro carries the team on his shoulders.

Ndoro has proven to be a knight on a white charger for the Buccaneers, having scored 11 of their 15 league goals so this season.

The striker has played a key role in deciding the outcome of numerous Pirates' encounters, often popping up to spare the blushes of the team at the most crucial moments.

READ: Palacios blasts Bucs players 

Pirates were played off the park by a spirited Maritzburg United in their Absa Premiership encounter that ended 2-1 in favour of the KZN outfit as they isolated Ndoro, again proving their reliance on the Zimbabwean international.

However, Palacios begged to differ as Ayanda Nkosi opened his account after coming on as a second half susbstitute at the Harry Gwala stadium last night.

"But Ayanda Nkosi scored... but I get your point. I’m not relying on Ndoro," said Palacios. "If we are relying on Ndoro I can play one striker, but I played two strikers – Thabiso [Kutumela] and Ndoro.

"I took out another player [Kutumela] and I played another attacking player [Mahlatse Makudubela].

"I believe in the 4-4-2 formation, but on this day I've had a month and half [at the helm] and game-by-game it’s not easy to solve the problems that we have.

"Today at least Ayanda scored, and we need to work [still]. We have a game against Bloemfontein Celtic [on December 20], which will be very difficult, but what I’m saying is: we need to play more on the wings.

"Today maybe ball possession was on our side, but you know you don’t win games with ball possession. We will continue to practice. I’m happy that Ayanda scored and we will see [who scores] in the next game."

Palacios, a long-serving safeguard for when things don't go well for the Mayfair-based outfit, also rejected claims that throwing on all his substitutes before the hour-mark was a sign of desperation.

"No... Listen, coaches are different. I believe time is an enemy. I cannot wait for [the last] ten minutes, I cannot wait for [the last] fifteen minutes [to make a substitute]," he added.

"I want to equalise earlier and to win the game earlier, so why should I wait? ’I cannot wait to say, 'no, it’s twenty minutes [left]' – that is not my style.

"I need to change earlier. In the first half, I needed to make two substitutions in the changing room and I told the players, if they are not performing, I will change quickly

"And [besides], I needed a result. I had a plan with ten minutes to go [before half time] to make the substitutes to win the game and not to lose and I did.

"You need to take risks, you cannot wait for ten minutes [left]. It's impossible; not with me."

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Article by: Robin-Duke Madlala
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