Hot-and-cold performance in South Africa’s DStv Premiership has forced Orlando Pirates coach Josef Zinnbauer to admit that he is missing Malawi National Football Team striker Gabadinho Mhango and his two teammates.
Zinnbauer made the admission ahead of this evening’s league match against Bloemfontein Celtic, whose coach is Malawian John Maduka.
Mhango, Tshegofatso Mabasa and Zakhele Lepasa remain on the sidelines after picking injuries over the past weeks.
In the trio’s absence, attacking midfielders such as Deon Hotto, Vincent Pule and Kabedlo Dlamini are starting to contribute more frequently with assists and goals.
However, Pirates fans could be relieved with news that midfield attacker Thembinkosi Lorch is expected back soon, with Mabasa and Mhango also likely to return in the next few weeks.
Zinnbauer said his team has been performing well despite its long injury list.
“Even though we have so many injuries, we are still performing very well, the players are working very hard to make sure fans are proud. We fight for everything and the supporters understand that a lot of players are injured. I hope the players come back so we can have more choices up front.
“I know it’s difficult but in football you fight and next week we move to the league and we hope to get three points because when we do well, it’s good for us.”
According to goal.com, Pirates and others’ return is likely to impact positively on the team.
“Pirates could soon have the potency they need to attack on all fronts – the local league and cup, and the Confederation Cup. While Bucs have won six of their past eight matches in all competitions, they have only won three of their past eight domestic league games,” reads a goal.com report.
Pirates are forth on the table with 29 points from 18 games, seven behind leaders Mamelodi Sundowns, who also have two games in hand.
Celtic are languishing on position 11 with 18 points from 17 matches.