Coach Pablo Franco reflects on derby victory

Pablo Franco, coach of AmaZulu FC during the 2023 Carling Knockout media day for AmaZulu at Moses Mabhida Outer Fields in Durban on 1 November 2023 Β©Gerhard Duraan/BackpagePix

AmaZulu head coach Pablo Franco Martin, in a candid post-match press conference on Friday evening, provided insightful reflections on the team’s 3-0 victory against rivals, Royal AM at Moses Mabhida Stadium which propelled Usuthu to 7thΒ position.

Martin began by expressing his assessment of the team’s overall performance, setting a high standard for excellence for his charges.

“We are far from the level I want us to be in; perfection in football is impossible to achieve,” stated Franco.

Despite the convincing scoreline, he emphasised that flawless results are hard to come by in the 16 team DStv Premiership and believes AmaZulu is still distant from the elite bracket.

Analysing the game, Martin highlighted the team’s impressive start in the first half, commending their display of quality football.

“We played good football. We scored three goals and probably could have netted 5-6,” he remarked, acknowledging the team’s missed opportunities for further domination.

The Spaniard dissected the second half, noting a shift in tactics as they sought greater control. Despite their opponent’s increased possession, he credited goalkeeper Olwethu Mzimela for making crucial saves from long-range shots.

AmaZulu adapted their strategy, focusing on exploiting counter-attack opportunities while acknowledging their failure to convert clear chances.

Franco then turned his attention to the team’s progress, drawing attention to their remarkable improvement against KZN opposition compared to the previous season.

“Last season saw eight official derbies with four draws and four losses. This year, we’ve secured three wins and two draws already, surpassing last season’s tally with several games left,” he proudly stated.

With a focus on future endeavours, Martin emphasised the importance of rest and preparation during the upcoming break.

“All of us deserve good holidays, and after that, we will have a mini pre-season to gear up for the second half of the season,” he affirmed, underscoring the team’s commitment to continuous growth.

“We want to keep growing, aiming for the upper part of the table,” he concluded.