Since taking charge following the suspension of Julio Leal, Palacios has seen The Buccaneers' from improve and he believes it is down to the mandate handed to him by chairman Irvin Khoza.
“The chairman has made it very clear – second position is no good for Orlando Pirates. I follow this philosophy because I also have a winning mentality and that is to win every single game,” Palacios says.
“One hundred per cent … the players have responded 100 per cent. I never have problems with any players.
“When I took over from the first time, the same day I gave them the rules, what I need for training, what I need in the camp and what I need for the private life. And I told the players these rules from day one.
“At this moment everything is 100 per cent; the players comment and the players talk when we are watching the video analysis, everyone comments about his mistakes, and players come to me and say ‘coach I need to train harder and improve myself’ – I have had great cooperation from the players and this is important.
“If any coach does not have a group of engaged players then you can’t coach a team. I believe I need to treat the players as a son first, then a friend and then as a player.”
Palacios also feels his knowledge as a former player comes in handy.
“I know the way to treat players because I was a player myself and I use my experience to know how to treat young players and senior players,” he says.
“In the meantime the senior players and the young players need to respect the same rules. And I am happy because everyone is responding: everyone is arriving early, everyone is training; everyone wants to train more."
Palacios says he is happy with his team’s attitude and the fact that his players were working with him and not against him.
“I am happy because of the welcome the players gave me and the way the players are responding.
“I am happy the senior players are cooperating; they are giving advice to the young players and they know when it is ok to talk. Everyone communicates, but the one thing that is important here is the Orlando Pirates brain and the Orlando Pirates family.”