Defending Castle Premiership champions Orlando Pirates have not looked like league winners since the start of this season.
The Mighty Bucs lost their first game of the season to SuperSport United 2-0 and have only managed two wins from six games,
In a rare interview, Buccaneers coach Roy Barreto spoke to the Star newspaper about their indifferent form.
"To be honest, we have been on an up-and-down wave lately," admitted the Pirates trainer on Wednesday.
"There are many reasons why the team hasn't been doing well and the most obvious is the loss of personnel and the (non) acquisition of new ones,"
Pirates face Manning Rangers for their first Coca Cola Cup game in Durban on Saturday, a team that held them 1-1 at Orlando Stadium last month and Barreto is remaining understandably cautious in his approach.
"You can only talk about winning the cup once you reach the final. We'll take it game by game, starting Saturday of course,"
"Teams (like Rangers) lift their games when play against us. They will again play positive football and we have a fair idea of what to expect and how to counter it."
With reasons given for Bucs not performing as expected, one wonders if the Pirates supporters will accept this if their team's poor form continues.