The Buccaneers are on a 10-match unbeaten run and face their old foes who are struggling for form
Orlando Pirates assistant coach Fadlu Davids insists their previous three derby wins over Kaizer Chiefs this season as well as their good form will not matter when they meet their rivals in Sunday’s Premier Soccer League Soweto derby showdown at FNB Stadium.
Having recorded eight victories and two draws across all competitions in their last 10 games, Pirates appear the stronger side on paper.
Their form is in stark contrast to Chiefs’ run in the last 10 games where they have managed just one win, five draws and four defeats.
With Pirates having also beaten Amakhosi in three derby meetings so far this season, Davids feels that will not influence Sunday’s game.
“It’s really important to focus on the tactical plan and not the occasion. The task is what we are focusing on, what we have to do as a team, as a unit.” Davids told Pirates’ media.
“This game is different to the previous three derbies this season because they are a different team. Tactically they have adjusted with Nurkovic back. It is a completely different game.
“We have to be really careful in our preparations because when it comes to the Soweto derby, a game of this magnitude, form is out of the window. So we approach the game as a once-off with three points at stake.”
Victory for Pirates will see them climbing from fourth to second spot on the PSL table, while Chiefs will only reach ninth in the table with a win.
Pirates midfielder Fortune Makaringe agrees with Davids that form does not count going into this derby confrontation which he calls “a very special fixture.”
“In a derby, it matters not how you’ve been performing. It’s all about what you do on the day,” Makaringe told the Pirates website.
“We just need to make sure that we do the job on the day. It’s about focusing on the job at hand, and not dwell on what you’ve done in the past. So, we need to be as professional as possible, and make sure that we fight for the Buccaneers, and fight for the badge.
“It’s a very special fixture. It’s always a big occasion. When you step to the field, you do so knowing that the pride of the club is at stake. It’s truly something special.”
Pirates go into this match on the back of beating Enyimba 2-1 in a Caf Confederation Cup Group A match last Wednesday.
“It [the win against Enyimba] is definitely a confidence builder. I mean, at this stage of the season, you have to take each positive you can get, whether big or small,” said Makaringe