Zinnabauer wins his first game as Pirates coach

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Newly appointed Orlando Pirates coach Josef Zinnabauer won his first match in charge of the Soweto team. Bucs beat a stubborn Black Leopards 3-1 at the Orlando Stadium on Saturday. This was the club’s fifth win of the season, which helped them move to fifth spot on the log with 20 points.

This was the last match of 2019 for both teams.

Pirates who have been struggling so far this season and went against former players Thabo Matlaba and Edwin Gymah.

Black Leopards were denied the lead by Pirates keeper Wayne Sandilands inside the opening five minutes of the match. Pirates took a well-deserved lead through defender Innocent Maela in the 22nd minute. Minutes later, Vincent Pule fluffed a golden opportunity to increase Bucs’ lead.

Forward Gabadinho Mhango came close to scoring from inside the box. The visitors’ keeper Jonas Mendes denied Pule six minutes before the break. Mendes was kept busy by the Pirates forwards, but the score remained 1-0 at the break.

Pirates continued pilling the pressure early in the second half in search of another goal.

Veteran Thuso Phala wasted an opportunity to level matters in the 57th minute, but Mwape Musona made amends minutes later when he found the equaliser for the visitors.

Pirates restored their lead three minutes later through Mhango after a through pass from Luvuyo Memela. Bucs were awarded a penalty nineteen minutes from time after Mhango was fouled by the opposition’s keeper. The Malawian international made no mistake from the spot and scored his sixth league goal of the season.

Sandilands was kept busy by Leopards in the closing stages of the match, but Pirates managed to hold on.

Pirates will be away to Bloemfontein Celtic when the ABSA Premiership action resumes on 4 January, 2020, with Leopards visiting Highlands Park the following day.

Meanwhile,  Highlands Park beat Golden Arrows 2-0 at home, and rookies Stellebosch FC moved from the bottom of the log after a narrow 1-0 win on the road to Baroka FC.


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