It was a game which could have gone either way between Orlando Pirates and Mamelodi Sundowns, and Bucs defender Tapelo Xoki says allowing Downs score early made things difficult for them, as the Brazilians ended up 1-0 winners in the DStv Premiership on Saturday at Orlando Stadium.
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Xoki and the rest of the Pirates team seemed to be very shaky for most of the game, while trying to build-up from the back, which led to Sundowns getting a goal inside just six minutes of play in the game courtesy of Cassius Mailula, who took his DStv Premiership scoring tally to seven.
The Bucs defender says losing the match is hard for them since they fought very hard to make sure that they bounced back, but it just wasn’t to be on the day and they will move on from the loss.
“It is a hard one to swallow, everyone put in a good shift. They scored early, which made the game difficult for us. But we stuck to the game plan, trying to build-up, keep the ball and ask questions of them. We were unlucky not to score with Vincent Pule’s shot, it is a hard one to take,” said the Bucs defender.
“But we will move on from this, we have a lot of positives to take from the game.”
Pirates and Downs’ clash saw Orlando Stadium full of black and white Buccaneers fans and the yellow of Bafana Ba Style. Seeing their fans rallying behind the team to try and get the all-important equaliser to at least get a point, Xoki feels that they disappointed their fans, but he is grateful of the support and says they will do better in their next game.
“Great energy from AmaBuccaneer. They were there from the first whistle to the last. They kept us going and pushing and they were there with us in the second half when we came close to scoring the equaliser. We would like to say sorry to them. We will pick ourselves up and make sure that we get positive results going forward,” he concluded.
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The loss stopped Bucs; run of three consecutive wins, while for Sundowns, they stretched their winning streak to 15 games. In terms of points, the Pretoria outfit lead the log standings with 55 points after 21 games, while Bucs have registered 28 points and they are in position four on the table (possibilities are that they might go down on the log depending on Sunday’s results).