Tshepo Ntsoelengoe
Football Writer
2 minute read
1 Jun 2021
5:30 am

OPINION: Zinnbauer’s days at Orlando Pirates are numbered

Tshepo Ntsoelengoe

The Orlando Pirates head coach hasn't got the best out of a squad full of star quality.

Josef Zinnbauer's Orlando Pirates have struggled for consistency. Picture: Shaun Roy/BackpagePix.

 

It doesn’t rain but it pours for Orlando Pirates coach Josef Zinnbauer, who seems to have certainly lost trust from some of the club’s supporters, eager to see him get the sack.

ALSO READ: Jooste frustrated as Pirates stumble at Galaxy

As a football fan, I understand where they are coming from with the way the club has been playing in the last few months.

Truth is, this season Pirates didn’t rise to the occasion as was expected, especially with a lot of signings they made ahead of the campaign. It did look promising at first, as they went on to lift the MTN8 early in the season.

From then on, however, the team lacked consistency.

There would be a time when you would watch a Pirates game and notice signs of improvements thinking to yourself  ‘this team is onto something’. But come the next game, they put on a dismal display.

We can’t run away from the fact that they have been suffering from a lot of injuries, but truth is they have a big squad with a lot quality.

Or at least, it is a squad that I thought to myself is full of quality because some of these players have become a shadow of their old selves.

For example, this is probably one of the worst seasons for Thulani Hlatshwayo in his first campaign in Bucs colours. The guy was even dropped from the Bafana Bafana squad by new coach Hugo Broos! Anyway, that’s a story for another day.

But now, who do you blame at Pirates, the players, management or the coach?

Of course football fans will go on to blame the coach, because they expect a coach to steer the team into the right direction and bring out the best out of his players, it sounds unfair, trust me, I know because players also have to do their duty.

The club has failed to challenge for the league title are likely to finish outside the top two on the log standings with two games remaining.

They are in third place, level on 46 points with Golden Arrows, who are in third spot,  trailing AmaZulu by four points, with Mamelodi Sundowns runaway champions.

That puts a lot of pressure on Zinnbauer, who was also knocked out of the Caf Confederation Cup at the quarterfinal stage.

Losing to TS Galaxy this past weekend has made things worse and seeing from TV how Screamer Tshabalala and Floyd Mbele were frustrated with the team, I don’t really think JZ will be coaching in South African top flight football next season, especially at Pirates.

The German born coach was said to be confident about the safety of his job, but after that Galaxy loss, I don’t think that is still the case.

Added to this, the Pirates fans will be marching to Orlando Stadium on Saturday putting more pressure on the management to fire Zinnbauer.