Sibongiseni Gumbi
Football Writer
1 minute read
9 Nov 2020
10:05 am

Zinnbauer thanks South Africans for the support as his son battles for his life in hospital

Sibongiseni Gumbi

Orlando Pirates coach, Josef Zinnbauer, has thanked South Africans for their support and words of encouragement after his son was involved in a horrific accident back home in Germany. 

Josef Zinnbauer, coach of Orlando Pirates looks to maintain his side's unbeaten run against Caf Champions League opponents Enyimba. Picture: Gerhard Duraan/BackpagePix.

Zinnbauer left in a hurry just over a week ago immediately after guiding Pirates to a crucial 3-0 win in the first leg of MTN8 semifinals, giving rise to speculation that he might not come back.

READ: Hunt claims his Wits mentality helped Pirates thump Chiefs

Pirates later released a statement that revealed the coach had asked for compassionate leave as his son was in hospital but couldn’t provide further details including when he would be back, but asked that his privacy be respected.

But the German was back in time to help the Buccaneers beat Chiefs 2-0 in the second leg on Sunday after spending a few days with family.

“I have to say thank you to everyone who supported my family,” said Zinnbauer in a post-match interview of Sunday.

“A lot of supporters, the whole staff, the whole club and the whole squad. It meant a lot for me and my family to receive messages of support. It was unbelievable, it was fantastic for my family. Thank you for this. Thank you to the chairman as well,” he said.

Zinnbauer said his son was still in hospital with no change in his condition but he remained hopeful he would make a full recovery.

“My son is still fighting and at the moment he is in a coma and there is nothing I can do for him. We have to see what happens in the next few days but we pray for him and give him the energy that we get from the what I feel is the whole of South Africa,” said Zinnbauer.