Bucs coach’s excuses ‘a cop-out’

LOW MORALE: Orlando Pirates caretaker coach Augusto Palacios has been hauled over the coals Picture: GALLO IMAGES
LOW MORALE: Orlando Pirates caretaker coach Augusto Palacios has been hauled over the coals
Picture: GALLO IMAGES

Take responsibility for your poor performance, Khoza advises

Orlando Pirates chairman Irvin Khoza believes caretaker coach Augusto Palacios’s claims of player ill-discipline at troubled Bucs are a cop-out.

Khoza said he was to meet with the first team later yesterday to discuss issues of taking responsibility in the wake of Bucs’ disastrous 6-0 thrashing at the hands of Mamelodi Sundowns at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday‚ a result that sparked a violent pitch invasion by Pirates’ fans.

Khoza pronounced on Monday in a media conference at the Rand Stadium that Bucs would speed up their search for a replacement for Muhsin Ertugral‚ who resigned to leave Palacios as caretaker in November‚ to the point of making an announcement on a new man this Monday.

The chairman also said Palacios’s claims of indiscipline and players not caring enough about losing were an excuse for poor results.

“You said Palacios is a professor‚” Khoza said in response to a question that had used Palacios’s nickname.

“If you are a professor, there is no problem that is above you.

“And I’m disappointed if ever he’s punting that narrative.

Because he should be the one assisting us‚ from his experience‚ and his knowledge of the game‚ to come up and give us the factors that will assist us.

“If you start punting reasons it might be taking the focus away from yourself‚ because we end up auditing you also.

“As a coach, he has a responsibility to assist us to understand, because he has been there for some time as an insider. Help us because you are close to the players.

“So don’t give us reasons that are maybe going to justify your shortcomings. I can’t buy that one. It’s a nice easy way for him [to deflect attention]‚ I’m afraid.”

Khoza did say he would meet with Bucs players to discuss the issue of taking responsibility.

“I will be having a meeting with the whole team‚” the Bucs chairman said.

“Interestingly enough, I had a meeting just before we came back for this year.

“I had a full meeting on February 3‚ with the whole technical team‚ where we discussed the mid-season report‚ making sure that responsibilities were understood.

“And issues that arose out of the data that he [Palacios] had collated on the players.

“I also had meetings with some of the players one on one. With Oupa Manyisa‚ Happy Jele‚ because that’s a routine.”

Khoza’s comments aimed at long-time development servant Palacios – often the fireman caretaker in a head coaching crisis – come as something of a surprise.

They are an indication of the level of dissatisfaction at Pirates with a season in which the team had a record defeat equalled with a 6-1 thrashing by SuperSport United in November‚ then having that record beaten by Saturday’s drubbing at Loftus.

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