With Wayne Sandilands returning between the sticks on Saturday night in Orlando Pirates’ narrow 1-0 win over Stellenbosch FC in the Telkom Knockout, coach Rulani Mokwena entertained questions about his selection criteria.
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He had recently dropped Sandilands and looked to newly signed French goalie Joris Delle to be the club’s first choice, but after he conceded eight goals in three matches there were doubts about his qualities and Delle was dropped at the weekend.
Mokwena told the media after the game: “With regards to our selection, we have a certain criteria that we use to pick players, not just for Wayne Sandilands. Obviously one is form and the other being merit, whoever deserves to play based on what we see at training. And that is how it is a Pirates, we take it one game at a time be it a cup or a league match. We try to put the best team on the pitch for that match.”
When asked if Sandilands would keep his place, Mokwena was non-committal.
“The first thing for us is to go back and analyse this match and work out what we picked up. To think about the next game is premature. We will start our preparation as such. I will never throw my players under the bus. I am proud of them. We will continue to work hard to solve whatever problems we have. Is the conceding goals over? I wish I can say so, but there are no guarantees in football. What I can say is that if we continue to defend the way we did then we will be okay,” the Pirates coach said.
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