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Riveiro Responds To Kopo

Orlando Pirates head coach Jose Riveiro has responded to accusations by his Chippa United counterpart Kwanele Kopo, who had alleged that the Spaniard had used “abusive language” towards the opposition bench.

The Buccaneers booked back-to-back Nedbank Cup finals after beating Chippa 3-1 at a sold-out Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.

The game was a heated affair with seven yellow cards and a sending off for Bienvenu Eva Nga, resulting in visible tension between the two benches.

After the match, Kopo had accused Riveiro of using foul language and said was “shocked” about the conduct from the Pirates bench, however, Riveiro insisted the “swearing” came from both sides and they had to stand up to protect their players.

“I don’t have opinions about other colleagues’ opinions,” he said when asked by SABC Sport about the accusations by Kopo.

“It doesn’t make any sense. Who am I to [comment]? If he feels that we used – how do you call it? ‘Abusive’?

“No, there were moments of tension between the benches because I was not happy, and I was not comfortable with the situation inside the field. With some behaviours and some things that were happening during the game, which for me are not related with football at all.

“One of the things that belong to my role [as coach] is to try to protect and defend my players.

“I am a quiet person, peaceful, extremely peaceful person, but there are moments that you have to stand up and make some questions about what’s going on, that’s all.

“Then he can give you a description, and I’m ready to hear the words that he says are abusive, or not abusive, because I think nothing happened out of the lineage of competition, let’s say.

“The swearing came from every angle, not only from our bench – things that happen during the game when emotions are high and the motivation is so high before the matches and maybe the things are not going the way you wanted, or the way you were dreaming yesterday when you went to sleep, and suddenly you find a reality which is different, and it’s difficult to control yourself.

“But I think Orlando Pirates’ bench was behaving in a correct way, in a professional way. And especially defending and protecting our players, which is our obligation.”

iDiski Times
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