Thembinkosi Sekgaphane
Phakaaathi Digital Administrator
2 minute read
17 Sep 2014
2:22 pm

Vermezovic on the other side as MTN8 title awaits

Thembinkosi Sekgaphane

Three years after his hopes of an MTN8 trophy were dashed while in charge of Kaizer Chiefs, Vladimir Vermezovic finds himself on the opposite side of the fence and at the helm of the very team which snatched victory at the FNB Stadium.

FILE PICTURE: Vladimir Vermezovic during the Orlando Pirates press conference at the PSL Offices in Parktown on August 21, 2014 in Johannesburg, South Africa. (Photo by Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images)

Oupa Manyisa scored in extra-time to hand Orlando Pirates their second successive top-eight title and in doing so, denied Vermezovic a third trophy with Amakhosi.

Fast-forward three years and Vermezovic heads into Saturday’s showdown at Moses Mabhida Stadium looking to add to his Nedbank Cup triumph which the club won at the end of last season.

“There is a strange habit in the world of soccer that players who came from a previous team don’t celebrate when they score a goal against their former team … well I’m going to celebrate for sure,” Vermezovic joked in Johannesburg on Wednesday.

“Oupa took this trophy from me but now I am happy because he is on my side. I hope he can repeat the same game … but not in extra-time, let’s go before.”

Clearly in a jovial mood, Vermezovic is confident of getting a second victory over Chiefs this season, following the Buccaneers penalties victory over their bitter Soweto rivals in the Carling Black Label Cup in July.

Looking at his options in attack, Vermezovic has reason to be cheerful.

In Kermit Erasmus and Lehlohonolo Majoro, the Serbian coach has undoubtedly the most dominant strike partnership in the league.

Even more encouraging for Vermezovic is the form of his former player at Chiefs, Majoro, who has scored four goals in both the league and cup competition, all of which have come from the bench.

Majoro has linked up superbly with Erasmus and the pair have already notched-up nine goals between them.

But Vermezovic is in no hurry to use Majoro in a starting role, and has warned Pirates’ supporters not to expect Majoro to be in his starting XI anytime soon.

“It’s a good combination, Kermit and Majoro. Until it’s not working, we’re going to use them both in that way,” he said.

“Maybe in this game I’m going to change it, you never know, but we’re going to use this system of play.”

With an R8 million cheque waiting to be handed out to Saturday’s winning team, Vermezovic said he has not even thought about the lucrative prize money that goes along with the title.

“We’ll try to approach the game without tension and the only thing that we have to do on the field is to fight for the trophy.

“There’s no question about money. The question is about glory and about history. We want another trophy for us and our families and for our supporters, that’s clear.

“We don’t think about money.”

– Sapa