Simba SC’s ‘Juju’ was ploy to try get into minds of Orlando Pirates' players – Kerr

Dylan Kerr of Moroka Swallows.
The 55-year-old reveals his experience with ‘Juju’ in Africa after Wekundu wa Msimbazi tried a trick in their fixture against the Buccaneers

Dylan Kerr has revealed Simba SC’s “rituals" during their Caf Confederation Cup game against Orlando Pirates was to try and get into the minds of the players ahead of kick-off.

There were ‘Juju’ claims that surrounded the quarter-final return leg fixture at Orlando Stadium after Simba players took to the centre of the pitch and pretended to be praying before smoke was seen billowing from the legs of the players.

The scene attracted Pirates officials, who after Simba had done their part, used water to spray the ground before kick-off. However, it was Pirates who went ahead to emerge 4-3 winners on penalties, after a 1-1 draw in normal and added time, to qualify for the semi-finals.

Kerr, who handled Simba in 2015, has confessed exclusively to GOAL it is Simba’s culture to do such rituals, though he did not get involved with the same during his one-year stint with the Tanzania Mainland Premier League champions.

What did Kerr say?

“’Juju’ it’s their culture,” the 55-year-old British tactician, who currently handles Moroka Swallows in PSL responded to GOAL when asked about the incident at Orlando Stadium. “I saw the video and obviously it doesn’t work it’s a ploy to try and get into the minds of the players and fans.”

Simba SC players in South Africa.

Asked whether he has previously been involved in ‘Juju’ while coaching in Africa, Kerr said: “I’ve done many ‘Juju rituals especially, at Black Leopards of South Africa but I never did it with Simba.

“Like at Black Leopards, we used to bathe in some stuff, get washed, blessed, and walk over smoke before every match.”

Asked if the ‘Juju’ ever worked in his team’s favour, Kerr said: “I don’t know if it does but they believe in it. We pray we sing beautiful songs they have rituals so you have to join in that ritual but many players don’t and that’s got to have an effect on the game some do some don’t so if you are not altogether in it how can you believe it will work?

Kerr continued: “I remember a massive game and the club Black [Leopards] wanted us to go into the mountain the night before a game for four hours round trip to get ‘Juju’, I refused to go so the technical team went and got it and brought it to camp.”

‘At Nathi, it was a funny story’

The former Gor Mahia coach also remembered doing the “rituals” with Nathi Lions FC also of South Africa.

Gor Mahia coach Dylan Kerr celebrates with Haroun Shakava.

“At Nathi, it was a funny story, we were running down the beach and I was so far in front I turned around and saw players standing so I asked why they were not running,” Kerr remembered.

“There were chicks buried in the sand their butts and feet sticking up in the air, heads buried and they would not cross that line.”

He also remembers when a team in the FKF Premier League did “rituals” before facing Gor Mahia: “When I was in Gor Mahia, we were playing a team, I can’t remember which team, and they had a ‘Juju’ man and we saw they had slaughtered a goat, and they had a mixed bag of things.

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“They sacrificed or killed something and they paid a lot of money for the ‘Juju’ man to give them luck.

“Anyway it was not the case because we beat them 5-0 and after the final whistle, they chased the ‘Juju’ man down and they got the money back because they did not believe the ‘Juju’ worked or it was not good ‘Juju’.”