Jose Riveiro Insists That Patrick Maswanganyi Still Has More To Offer

An enthusiastic Orlando Pirates coach Jose Riveiro has shared his optimism on the potential of midfielder Patrick Maswanganyi.

Riveiro believes that Maswanganyi’s burgeoning talent is yet to reach its peak and sees his recent call-up to the Bafana Bafana camp as a testament to his abilities.

The 25-year-old joined the Soweto giants at the start of the 2023/24 season from SuperSport United and has proved influential for the Buccaneers under Riveiro, having contributed five goals and seven assists in 28 appearances across all competitions.

However, the Spaniard believes that consistency is key for “Tito” and his excellent performances including his most recent Man of the Match display in the Soweto derby that earned him a call-up to the national team.

Speaking at the Nedbank Cup round of 16 media briefing, the Pirates mentor stated that he does not want to receive all the credit for Maswanganyi’s brilliance but praised the player’s dedication to his craft.

“It’s not me as a coach; it’s the environment; it’s the players around him,” Jose Riveiro said.

“It is the way we try to play, he benefits from those things. I don’t like to get credit for those transformations or improvements.

“It’s everybody around the players, who is there to try to help them get better, to make them feel confident and to trust themselves.

“First of all, if they don’t have the level of confidence that Tito (Maswanganyi) used to show in the games there is nothing to do.

“I’m happy for the boy because it’s not easy to make it, to play at Pirates; it’s not easy to do it in the way that he’s doing it.

“Hopefully, he can continue improving because I think there’s room and space for him to be more complete, a better player, and more consistent.

“I think it’s going to happen. He’s a guy who loves to play football; it’s easy to see, and with that approach, the only thing that is going to happen to him from now until the end of his career, hopefully in 10 years or 12, is an improvement.”

The defending champions of the Nedbank Cup will come against the second division side Hungry Lions on Saturday 16 March at Orlando stadium and Riveiro says they will not take their opponents for granted.

  ”We know the story about these games, and we are preparing ourselves with a massive respect for the game because we know it is not going to be an easy one,” he concluded.

The Buccaneers next host minnows Hungry Lions in a Nedbank Cup Round of 16 clash at Orlando Stadium on Saturday.

Kick-off is at 18:00

Written by Ayanda Vezi