Orlando Pirates duo, Xola Mlambo and Vincent Pule have been getting left out of recent matches. But why? Is it because they are out of form? Is it fatigue?
The statistics say that Pule has already played 2275 minutes so far this season while he played 2091 minutes for Bidvest Wits in the past three seasons combined. Mlambo played an average of 1175 minutes per season in the last three seasons for Wits while at this stage he has clocked 2301 minutes for Pirates!
So what does this say? Is it an issue of form or fatigue? Fans such as The Milligan are pointing fingers at the Buccaneers’ technical team and say that the team is aware that the players are exhausted so why field them?:
“… these two players are fatigued, but so is [Milutin Sredojevic] Micho, Rhulani [Mokeona] and Fadlu’s [Davids] team selection criteria. It leaves a lot to be desired. They are much aware of these players’ fatigue yet they continue fielding them. They know that goals are hard to come by yet they still refuse to partner [Justin] Shonga and [Augustine] Mulenga as strikers that should be helping each other to divide the load amongst themselves. If you are a coach that is worth your salt, you would have easily seen that in the [Soweto] Derby, the missing link was Mulenga.”
- Blogger: The Milligan
Other fans are concerned entirely about Pule and Mlambo’s form and feel that other players should be given a chance. Thula Ndabezitha thinks Mlambo is too slow and Pule is simply out of form and therefore needs to rest:
“Mlambo is good but slow. In other games, he suffers. Like with pacey opponents like [Black] leopards, we struggled. Pule is out of form, truth be told. We have other players that must be given a chance. Pule must rest but Mlambo must play.”
- Blogger: Thula Ndabezitha
The Sea Robbers had the weekend off after being knocked out of the Nedbank Cup in the Round of 32. Soccer Laduma reader AseiGwad thinks this is the perfect opportunity for Pule and Mlambo to bounce back and find their form:
“The players [Pule and Mlambo] are tired and they need some rest…. They have rested enough now on this Nedbank Cup weekend. They must start afresh.”
- Blogger: AseiGwad
Are Pule and Mlambo going through a bad run of form or are they simply in need of rest to bounce back? Let us know what you think in the comments below.