Soweto derby was like watching kids aged under 10 – Mahlangu

Jabu “Shuffle” Mahlangu, one of a few stars who played for both Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates, was not impressed with the standard of the Soweto derby.

The two South African soccer giants locked horns at the FNB Stadium at the weekend in what is known as the biggest football match in the southern Africa region.

The retired dribbling wizard, who played in some of the most scintillating Soweto derbies, was always on point in his heyday when Chiefs and Pirates crossed swords.

He went as far as saying watching the derby was like watching Under-10 players in a kick-about, pointing out that what he saw was imihlola (shocking).

“What a disappointing Soweto derby. It is about time we tell these boys to pull up their socks,” Mahlangu said in a video which he posted on his social media account.

“The Soweto derby is watched in Europe and in about 20 countries [and I stand to be corrected], and what we saw on Saturday is what we show the world, players losing the ball.

“In the first half, both teams couldn’t even combine three or four passes. Chiefs players pass to Pirates players and Pirates players pass back to Chiefs players, or they pass the ball outside,” he said.

He explained further: “You expect those errors from young kids and not at that level of the Soweto derby.

“Yes, coaches have their mistakes or blunders but at the end of the day you are the ones [the players] playing on the pitch.

“In the first half, there were no shots on target in a huge game like that, and there is no direction. It is like you are watching 10-year-olds who go where the ball is.

“Fans pay money to watch this, coaches must account. But these boys must be told they must have a hard look at themselves in the mirror because there is a lot that you must do.

“I don’t want to compare the derby to the one during our times or even before our times, I am talking about what I saw on Saturday, and it was very disappointing.

“A true reflection of that game was a draw and people go home. When I looked at the stadium, there were a lot of empty seats and that tells you something.

“Players must take responsibility. They can’t even put a combination of passes, hold the ball and share it. I am talking to the players and the coaches: what you showed us on Saturday was imihlola.

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