Why Rhulani is encouraged amid slump

Orlando Pirates caretaker coach Rhulani Mokwena has explained what gives him confidence to turn their current situation around.

Pirates are on a three-match losing streak across three different competitions, having been knocked out of the MTN8 after Saturday’s defeat to Highlands Park.

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The club and players in particular are also still coming to terms with the sudden departure of former head coach Milutin Sredojevic, who upped and left without prior warning last Friday, but an opportunity to pick themselves up from their slump awaits this evening.

Ahead of the Absa Premiership clash with AmaZulu, Mokwena pointed out signs of encouragement he had picked up following Saturday’s third straight defeat and believes supporters should also take heart therefrom.

“At this moment in time, I’m just feeling for the players and I think they know that we as a technical team feel the pain that they’re feeling,” said Mokwena.

“We go through the same amount of stress and suffering that they do, and the best thing ­for you to see if you are an Orlando Pirates member or supporter, is if at the end of the 90 minutes you see the players drop down on the pitch being distraught and carrying the weight of a defeat.

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“But they do so, knowing that they gave everything that they had to try and turn things around, and that is an encouraging sign. If you walk into the changeroom and see the players’ faces – you see that they feel the pain of the result.

“They are suffering and they know it’s not good enough – that is encouraging, because once there is an emotional connotation, you are then able to at least find some sort of buttons to press to be able to help assist in turning things around as quick as possible.

“So, I think the signs are good; I think the players are invested in the club and they fight for the badge, and in this moment in time we also suffer with them. Ours [jobs] is just to support them and try to find ways to assist them in overcoming this slump.”

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