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Orlando Pirates

'The Coach Is Not Pirates' Only Problem'

Former Orlando Pirates winger Dikgang Mabalane feels head coach Josef Zinnbauer should not be the only one taking the fall for the club's inconsistent performances this season.

Fourth-placed Pirates slumped to a 1-0 defeat to TS Galaxy over the weekend, denting their chances of qualifying for the CAF Champions League next season. They are currently four points behind second-placed AmaZulu, with two matches left to play this season. They are also in danger of not qualifying for the Confederation Cup, if they drop any more points. 

The Buccaneers have won the MTN8 this season, but Mabalane says this is not enough. 

“When it comes to the coach and the supporters being unhappy, I can understand. I don’t think Pirates’ problem is the coach. However, the coach has a responsibility at a club like Pirates and the expectations are always going to be high, because the supporters will trust that the coach has gotten the best they can get. But my view is that that’s not the only problem they have," Mabalane tells the Siya crew.

“The core of the matter is that Pirates has not performed well this season and one trophy is not enough. Pirates has got one of the best squads after Sundowns, but they did not live up to expectations. There’s no excuse, to be honest, for Pirates not to be competing for the title or Champions League for that matter. I really feel that there’s more to it at Pirates than the coach. Their performances have been below par, they’ve been inconsistent. Do you blame the coach for that? Partly, yes. But then you have players who are quality but did not live up to the standard that they are supposed to. The coach is not Pirates' only problem.

"My thing about the Pirates coach is when he arrived, I asked myself if this is the best Pirates can get? I doubt it. I looked him up and checked his profile and it was questionable. There's nothing to really show. They could have gotten someone with a better CV in the first place. That's my issue. When they appointed him, did his profile really qualify him as the best candidate for Pirates? I doubt he was the best. It's unfair to judge when, in the first place, they should have gotten someone with a better CV and pedigree. That's my view."

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