Baroka FC coach Wedson Nyirenda is adamant that his side will beat Orlando Pirates when they go head to head in the Telkom Knock-Out (TKO) final.
Bakgakga made history on Sunday as they reached a first-ever cup final after they eclipsed and eliminated defending champions Bidvest Wits 1-0 in the competition semi-final at the Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane.
Speaking to the media following the match, Nyirenda said that because many counted the win as a shock was the reason he came to the side and, with his record of having won titles at his previous clubs, was confident of leading his charges past the sea robbers early December.
“When I came in, I said I’m a man who goes to finals, and I believe in winning championships, that’s how I have always been,” said Nyirenda.
“I went to Mozambique [Ferroviario de Beira] and was in the finals of the national cup, and I won the league for the first time [in the club’s history],” he added.
The Limpopo-based outfit rose above themselves as they beat Golden Arrows, Mamelodi Sundowns and The Clever Boys – all without conceding a single goal – in their dream League Cup run and Nyirenda couldn’t hide his excitement.
“In Zambia, I cannot count … There are so many medals in my house, I don’t know where to put the one I’m going to get against Pirates,” he boasted.
He said he looked at it as a great honour for him to come back ‘home’ to South Africa and get into the [TKO] final.
“This is all I needed, because I know everything in the final will just unfold itself,” he said.
After twice falling short at the semi-final stage of the Nedbank Cup in 2011 and 2016, the club are said to have promised players bonuses for achieving this historic feat.
However, the Zambian tactician denies that this was their fuel for going out and putting out such a disciplined display against Wits.
“I think it was the attitude and approach [of the players] to the game that was perfect. Bonus or no bonus, I think the boys did a great job,” he said.
He said that one could be promised millions, but going into the pitch and not going through the application [of the game-plan], then it defeats the purpose.
“But today [Sunday] everyone fought, they sweated blood instead of water, and it showed that we needed [the victory] – we needed it more than Wits.
“Wits have won it, so we needed it more for the Limpopo people, who deserve better. We haven’t given them the best start in the league, so we said, let’s give them a Christmas bonus before Christmas,” he concluded.