THE BREAKDOWN: What To Expect From Pirates This Season
Previewing Orlando Pirates' 2017/18 season
Now that the 2017/18 season is underway, we take a look at what little league action we’ve seen and identify what key areas of the game have changed and what has stayed the same at Orlando Pirates.
Pirates found themselves fall outside of the top eight last season and drastic changes have been made in the form of a new coach, Milutin Sredojevic, a new assistant, Rhulani Mokwena and a host of new players, such as Thamsanqa Sangweni, Musa Nyatama and Wayne Sandilands.
It may be too early to tell, with just two games against Chippa United and Baroka FC taking place to date, but a number of changes have been made and fans will be hoping that they have been for the better. A home win over Chippa and an away draw against Baroka FC have left us with some encouraging signs.
Click through the images above to see the changes in Orlando Pirates’ team statistics so far, this season.
First and foremost, Pirates defence that conceded 40 goals last season, has conceded just one thus far, which can largely be attributed to an increase in defensive actions from 12 to 15,5, conceding fewer shots and winning more ground duels.
However, that has come at the cost of attacking impetus, with relatively fewer goals scored, with the team keeping less possession, making less passes and taking fewer shots. However, their passing accuracy has remained the same and so has their shot accuracy. After all, it’s not about how many chances you have, it’s about how many you’ve scored.
Pirates seem to have moved towards a somewhat more conservative, direct approach and it seems to have worked well for their defence. However, they will be expected to be more efficient in attack. Without Tendai Ndoro, that may be a difficult task, especially now that Ndoro has left the club, but the season is still just beginning and we have a long way to go. At least the most glaring issue, the team’s defence, seems to have found its feet under the man known affectionately as 'Micho'.
What do you expect from Orlando Pirates this season?