Josef Zinnbauer has explained the reason behind Orlando Pirates’ lack of consistency ahead of their Nedbank Cup last 16 round encounter with Maritzburg United at the Harry Gwala Stadium on Saturday.
Pirates’ have looked quite good in some games, while in other matches things would have turned out differently.
Recently though, the Buccaneers have registered some positive results with the Soweto club on a five games unbeaten streak.
Zinnbauer says injuries and the arrival of new players have made things quite difficult for them, but the team has somehow managed to play well despite all the obstacles.
“I think we don’t look flat, it’s just that in the past times we had a lot of new players coming in. We didn’t have a typical pre-season, we also had to integrate players. Then we had a lot of injured players, today we have about six offensive players who are injured,” said the German tactician.
“This is not easy. But we have had some good performances playing with players who are not strikers, like Deon Hotto, he is a full-back or winger. Vincent Pule is not a striker but he scored in the last games. Linda Mtambo also. It’s things that you have to change for a game. Just last week, we lost Terrence Dzukamanja in a training session. But we don’t have a lot of training sessions at the moment with games every three days. Maybe this is the reason for this situation. We played a lot of games and maybe two or three other clubs have played many games also after starting with the MTN8. We have more than eight players out now, some are in rehab sessions. This is not easy for our squad or our club. But even during this time, we’ve had good games.”
The Buccaneers are coming up against a Maritzburg side that is struggling in the DStv Premiership. Despite making it to the last 16 of the Ke Yona Cup, the Team of Choice find themselves having to battle it out of the relegation zone with the club occupying last place on the league standings.
But, cup games are different and Zinnbauer’s fellow countryman Ernst Middendorp will certainly hype his players to go all out in this match.
Whereas for Bucs, the Nedbank Cup offers the club an opportunity to record their second trophy this season after winning the MTN8 earlier in the campaign.