Orlando Pirates: Zinnbauer’s faith in Mabasa pays off


Orlando Pirates coach Josef Zinnbauer said that he had faith that Tshegofatso Mabasa could produce a goal for the side when thrown on in the latter stages of their PSL match against SuperSport United.

The Sea Robbers went into the changerooms at Orlando Stadium trailing 1-0 at half-time after Teboho Mokoena had given SuperSport the lead inside six minutes.

Orlando Pirates put SuperSport away

Vincent Pule had spurned two excellent chances to bring Orlando Pirates level and it would be a mistake by SuperSport that let them back into the game.

Pirates patient passing game finally crafted an opening before Ben Motshwari got goalside and was hacked down leaving the referee no choice but to point to the spot.

Zakhele Lepasa buried the penalty to level the scores and would look lively in Pirates pursuit of a winner but with nine minutes to go he made way for Mabasa.

Mabasa found himself in the right place at the right time after Innocent Maela nutmegged Ronwen Williams with a touch that wasn’t sweet but had enough on it to allow the striker to tuck the ball into the back of the net and secure three points for Zinnbauer’s team.

Mabasa stakes his claim with poachers goal

The coach said he was given a great deal of confidence by Mabasa’s performance in a friendly match last week.

“We are happy about him. He came in the last friendly game where he played 45 minutes in the second half, he scored three times. He was ready,” Zinnbauer told the media through a virtual press conference.

“I felt it in training this week, I felt it in the friendly game last week. I was 100 per cent sure that when we brought him in, and he got one opportunity and he scored. That’s the reason he came in and I’m very happy about it,” the coach added.

Mabasa had been part of a group of players being considered for loan spells elsewhere but could have bought himself time to impress Zinnbauer further.

Orlando Pirates plotting a course for success

Pirates win over SuperSport was their second in four league matches, and while it is too early to declare their season back on track, the three points will be welcomed. They remain unbeaten in the league so far this season and will be looking forward to the MTN 8 Final.

Zinnbauer’s charges will be back at the Orlando Stadium in midweek when they host Baroka FC.

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