Tinkler looking to the future


The result now gives Tinkler and his men a last chance to end the campaign with silverware if they beat SuperSport United in the final on May 28 at the Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane.

The coach, however, still faces the humility of being the first mentor in the Premier Soccer League era to fail to guarantee the club a top eight finish if they don’t win their only remaining league game on Saturday. Coincidentally, Pirates face SuperSport in that match, another club looking to preserve their top eight record.

Tinkler revealed he was already planning for next season, which suggests he strongly believes he will still be at the helm. Pirates will be hoping to make a fresh challenge for the Premiership title having been nowhere near rivals and newly-crowned champions Mamelodi Sundowns.

Their African sojourn in the CAF Confederation Cup, where they lost in the final to Tunisia’s Etoile du Sahel, was often used as an excuse for the Buccaneers’ poor domestic form.”I have a one-year contract with an option to extend. I am a professional coach and I continue doing my work and we need to prepare for next season.

Nothing changes,” said Tinkler. It’s a remark that will certainly divide the Pirates supporters, some of whom nicknamed him “Toddler” in their belief that the head coach job was too big for the former Bafana Bafana midfielder.

Tinkler has remained unfazed, and bringing in a trophy would certainly win him chairman Irvin Khoza’s favour. The coach admitted he would have to work on Pirates’ inconsistency going forward. “Of course I am worried. We went four games without a win and I was asking myself where this kind of performance (against Stars on Saturday) was the whole time,” Tinkler explained.

“I was always confident in this game because I knew it was a big game and the players knew it was a big game. I knew I would see a far better performance from them today because I know what they are capable of.

That’s the disappointing part, when you see them perform poorly even though you know what they are capable of. That’s the thing that hurts the most for me as a coach.

”He seemed unsure in his response when asked how he would describe the season following defeat in the final of the Confederation Cup and with one more league game to be played to determine where Pirates finish this season.”It will be important to end the season with a trophy, obviously.

“Looking back at the season, our league form was disappointing and so was losing in the final of the Confed Cup because that would have been a highly prestigious competition to win for any coach. “That is why it’s important to plan for next season and rectify the errors we made and build on what we have achieved this season.”

The Star

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