Mon 30 Apr by Mark Gleeson
Orlando Pirates coach Milutin Sredojevich has promised fans they will be going into the transfer market in the off-season to strengthen the side as they look ahead to a much busier season in 2018/19.Buying more players comes despite Pirates having finished runners-up in the Absa Premiership in a performance that showed a marked improvement from their 11th place finish at the end of the last campaign.“I can assure the fans we are looking to strengthen the side and to work extra hard for the new season,” he told TAB Sports Network Express.Micho said there was a massive campaign ahead for the Buccaneers.
“This season we just had the league and the Telkom Knockout and Nedbank Cup to worry about but next season we will also have the MTN8 and the African Champions League to compete in.“What is ahead of us is much tougher than what we have just had in front of us. But I believe we have laid a good foundation.”
Sredojevich did not give any details of the positions he felt the club needed to reinforce and traditionally at Orlando Pirates, coaches have little say in transfer business. This is usually the domain of chairman Irvin Khoza and his consigliore Stanley ‘Screamer’ Tshabalala.But the Pirates coach said the demands of the next season dictated two quality players per position.Attack is an obvious area where Pirates need a consummate goal scorer but could already have unearthed a gem in Zambian international Augustine Mulenga, who scored twice against Bidvest Wits last week and has made a favourable impression since signing in January.“When you are fighting on all fronts, you need to prepare properly for all those campaigns,” added Micho.“I’d like to assure our supporters that we know our obligation to keep our performances in sync with the demands if our supporters.”The next season starts with the league in August, followed the next week by the MTN8. The Telkom Knockout will run from October to December and the 2019 Champions League begins in December and runs through to May, with the Nedbank Cup set to start in February.He said he felt finishing second was nothing special for the Buccaneers. “This is normal, we don’t believe that we have done anything special. This is the standard that is supposed to be Orlando Pirates’ identity.“If our conversation rate in the first half of the season had been better, we could have gone one step further, but we need to say that we grew up as the season went on,” the coach added.