Ofori too sweet for a Pirates keeper


The magnitude of playing for a club such as Orlando Pirates may be behind goalkeeper Richard Ofori's many mistakes after his latest blunder, says Aime Kitenge.

Ofori was again at fault on Saturday in a 2-1 MTN8 quarter-final defeat to Swallows FC at Orlando Stadium.

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The Nigerian was first beaten at the near post by a Ruzaigh Gamildien free-kick before being caught in possession outside his area to leave Gamildien again with the simplest of lobbed finishes into an empty net.

"There is an element of insecurity to his game, retired goalkeeper Kitenge tells KickOff.

"He needs to stamp his authority and make it known that he is in charge. As a keeper you need to be on top of the players and make them feel that you are there to defend and protect them even when they make mistakes.

"The rest of the team needs to feel secure with you knowing that you will take responsibility for whatever happens.

"As a keeper, you must be aggressive in your commands, especially as an international goalkeeper. I think he is too sweet for a keeper at Pirates. Williams Okpara was feared by his own teammates and that is what you need as a keeper.

"You must never be sweet as a keeper which is why I even once knocked out my own defender Hilton Jordaan after he chose not to listen to me on three occasions. Ofori needs to have that hardness in him and command which will then eliminate these silly mistakes that he is now being remembered for instead of the good."

Despite his many blunders since a move to the Buccaneers Kitenge is still optimistic about the 27-year-old's capabilities.

"He is a good goalkeeper and there is no doubt about that. He has to be given time but with what happened last night I am worried, Kitenge adds.

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"He was strong in the Carling Black Label with the positive decisions that he was making but then makes such a silly mistake in the next game. It is still too early to judge him considering that he is a good keeper.

"What is important for him is to stamp his authority and feel he is in charge of the team as the last line of defence.

"It won’t be good for his confidence when the rest of the team starts doubting him because of all these mistakes that he keeps making. I like him because he is brave, but he needs to cut down on the mistakes since keeper blunders are suicidal."

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