Derby about bragging rights – Lekgwathi
While the focus of the Soweto Derby will be on the implications it has on the title race, Orlando Pirates captain Lucky Lekgwathi says the Absa Premiership match against Kaizer Chiefs will be about pride.
“We want to go there on Saturday to reclaim our bragging rights,” Lekgwathi said today.
“We are underdogs, and Chiefs are on top of their game, but in a derby there’s always pride at stake, so we want to win it.”
Pirates lie five points behind AmaKhosi on the table with a game in hand, and could make a significant step towards defending the Premiership title in the match at FNB Stadium on Saturday.
They come off a loss and a draw in their last two league outings, but Lekgwathi insisted his players would not dwell on the past.
“We’ve had a rough patch, but that’s not going to last – it’s water under the bridge. We’ve been working hard and changed our attitude.”
The 36-year-old defender said he hoped to change the mind-sets of some of the players.
“To play for a team like Pirates you always have to be on top of your game. If we can just change our attitude, we can fix things.”
Lekgwathi said he would take the lessons learned from previous derbies to help his team.
“It always feels great to be playing another derby, and I will share my experience with the younger players,” he said.
“It’s just about playing for yourself, your family and your supporters. The motivation I’m getting from our supporters is great.”
As a senior player in the team, Lekgwathi said the younger players helped with his motivation.
“Most of them are still young. They are always pushing me, and they also believe and trust in me.”
Lekgwathi said the team was crossing fingers that Bafana Bafana defender Siyabonga Sangweni would be fit for the encounter.
“Siya is not only a player, he is a leader. Whenever he is there, he makes a difference. I’d be happy to see him playing this week.
“He started training while we were in the Comores and he said he wants to play in the derby, so I hope he will be fit.”