Pirates coach Mokwena delighted by new shot-stopper Delle
Orlando Pirates' new goalkeeper Joris Delle looks set to keep the number one jersey for the foreseeable future.
This is after he got a big thumbs up from the man who gave him his official club debut in SA in a league game against Chippa United over the weekend.
Bucs' coach Rulani Mokwena was clearly impressed with Delle’s display - particularly the number of stupendous saves he made in the dying moments of the match when Chippa were pressing for an equaliser.
Pirates eventually won the match 2-1, giving Mokwena his first taste of victory after assuming the head coaching role at the Buccaneers.
“Top performance,” quipped Mokwena when asked what he made of the Frenchman’s debut on Saturday. “Maybe only one error, but a top performance. But again also [he’s got] human qualities, [he's] unbelievably smart.”
The 29-year-old Delle has had stints in France at Metz, Nice and Lens, as well as at Cercle Brugge in Belgium and NEC and Feyenoord in Holland before joining the Bucs in July.
“Tactically, you can see he’s played in Europe,” said Mokwena.
“He sharpens me. He’s a player that when I think of doing something on the pitch, he’s one of the first to ask me, ‘But why do we do this? Have you seen this side of things?’
“He’s extremely intelligent and also understands the game very well. You can see he comes from a different environment, where the level of coaching is very high.
“I’m really happy to have a player like Delle in the squad. He’s pure and he’s honest but at the same time, tactically Delle is in another level.
“When you have players like that, it’s easier for you to transmit messages onto the pitch because they assist you with the coaching. That’s one of his biggest roles and biggest contributions that he brings to the team.”
Delle kept regular Bucs goalkeeper Wayne Sandilands on the bench - and Siyabonga Mpontshane in the stands - over the weekend.
Judging by Mokwena’s accolades, Delle is set to retain his position when the Bucs play Bidvest Wits at the Moses Mabhida Stadium on Saturday night.