Palmer eager to see Bucks play with more fire in their bellies

Bush Bucks coach Ian Palmer said his charges started slow during their 2-0 win against Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila (TTM) at the Mthatha Stadium over the weekend, but that needs to change going into their next encounter against Richards Bay FC.

IN OFFENSIVE MODE: Mthatha Bucks winger Pentjie Zulu, left, challenging for the ball against Leepile Tlotlo of Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila FC at the Mthatha Stadium this past weekend Picture: ZINGISA MVUMVU

He said they eased up as the game progressed after his side picked up even though they missed out on a few chances.

“Most of the players are not used to this home crowd. It was a huge crowd and I think they took time to adapt to it, but in keeping the ball rolling they did well, I must say.

“My concern was in the second half where we turned to sit back and I think that’s just natural. When you are in the lead you don’t want to concede as you want to keep a clean sheet.

“Even if you look at PSL teams, they score one goal and they automatically go on defence mode and that’s one thing that coaches can’t stop at this point in time.”

Palmer said that’s exactly what happened in the second half against “a ball playing team”.

“They reminded me of the way Chippa (United) play. They hold on to the ball for a very long time and they could cause damage if they were a little bit more penetrative.

“I am happy we kept a clean sheet as well. We could have scored another two to three goals on the counter-attack, where we had players like Kwangwa Chileshe, (Linda) Bengu missing glorious opportunities.

“I’m happy with the supporters’ turnout because it was a really packed stadium,” he said.

Palmer said the season ahead was going be challenging and his side should brace for the bumpy road ahead as teams were displaying determination.

“It’s not going to be easy because if you checked (Jomo) Cosmos’ result, they beat Tuks 5-0 and that tells that Cosmos in on a mission, Highlands Park is on a mission, so it’s good for us just to be in there.”

He said his defence was more impressive on the day with the likes of BK Kama, Pentjie Zulu, Shane Thompson and Mpho Erasmus, who have scored a few goals since the start of the season.

“Chileshe is back from an injury and those guys made a good impact, taking the fact that it’s their first game here at home.”

Palmer said Bucks had a lot of work to do in terms of tightening up their entire game plan, but they were facing challenges in terms of training facilities.

“We don’t have a training venue. We hop on one place to another and we can’t focus on tactical work, so I need to get a place where we can do our tactical planning.

“Because we want to maintain a good record with away games, as our next match is away to Richards Bay FC.

“We want to get at least one point away from home because it’s always good to get a point away from home, but it is actually better when you get maximum points because you send a message out there.

“Richards Bay is also a ball playing team, but they are also a little bit more penetrative than TTM.”

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