TS Galaxy coach Dan Malesela has revealed what he told Orlando Pirates loanee Zakhele Lepasa before the penalty was taken in the win over Kaizer Chiefs.
The Rockets clinched their first major trophy in professional football after upsetting Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs 1-0 in the Nedbank Cup Final thanks to a late penalty goal by Zakhele Lepasa.
“I’m not sure how I’m feeling, I’ll figure it out a bit later. I just wanted my peace not to celebrate as usual. This was a very tense game,” the former Chippa United coach told SuperSport TV after the match.
“We were seriously under pressure in the second half from the beginning and I said: “This is a game where you have to pray to get a counter [attack] and score one goal and that’s it. And if we score at the right time it would be good for us”. It happened, because the nerves were getting too much but defensively we stood firm.
“That’s what team work is all about, sometimes when you’re under pressure you need people to bail you out. That’s why I said let’s not build up [from the back] because we’re under pressure, let’s get the ball up and see what happens from there. They [Kaizer Chiefs] were more determined than we were. These things do happen, we looked like we were nervous but in the end credit must go to the players because this wouldn’t have happened if they did not put effort.”
Malesela went on to explain what he told Lepasa before taking the historic spot-kick and thanked the fans for their support throughout the season.
“From where I was sitting it looked like a penalty. He [Zakhele Lepasa] came to me and asked, “what do I do now?” I said, “Be calm and do what you usually do, you’ll score”, he usually scores these penalties even at training.
“That’s the first people I went through [the fans], I wanted to celebrate with them and thanked them for what they have done for us, helping us through the season. For us to achieve this is really big. And God is great, he’s so amazing,” he said.