The MTN8 champions and CAF Confederation Cup finalists have endured a torrid time since returning from their African travels, winning just three of their 19 matches since losing out to TP Mazembe at the last hurdle.
Following Wednesday's 2-0 loss to Ajax Cape Town, Matsatsantsa now find themselves 12th on the Absa Premiership standings, a far cry from Tinkler’s memorable season with Cape Town City last year, where he guided the Citizens to third place and Telkom Knockout glory.
And the SuperSport coach knows he has to keep it together.
“It has been very difficult, but the players respond off me, and I have to be brave enough to take responsibility for the losses, and keep them motivated to get the results,” he said. “It’s a completely different scenario to what I faced [before]. It’s been a long season for these guys and we have just got to find ways to ensure we pick up points in our next seven games.”
The former Bafana Bafana international insists he still has the hunger to fight, and refuses to put the blame on any individuals as he works towards steering the club back up the standings.
“My hunger has always been there,” he said. “I’ve been in this situation many times, as a player, and I’ve also been in this situation before as a coach, and I have to remain positive. I believe we have enough depth in our squad to get us out of this conundrum we find ourselves in.
“But players have to step up; it’s easy to point fingers here and there which tends to happen when you find yourselves in situations like this – when things are good, no one points fingers. When things are bad, everybody points fingers, so you have to accept that, and ignore it and move on.”
When asked about his job security, Tinkler replied wryly, “There’s never job security – you guys know that.”
SuperSport are at home to Maritzburg United in their next fixture on Saturday evening.