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Winners & losers as Orlando Pirates falter against AmaZulu

16:54 WAT 15/10/2022
Richard Ofori, Orlando Pirates, October 2022
Ex-Bafana Bafana marksman Kermit Erasmus helped secure his side a point in a 1-1 league draw against Usuthu in Soweto on Friday night

On a night of missed opportunities for Orlando Pirates against AmaZulu, Kermit Erasmus was one of the few bright points for Bucs.

While it's good news for Pirates that Erasmus notched his first goal in his second stint at the club, they'll feel frustrated not to have won a game in which they had the better chances.

The stalemate at the Orlando Stadium means Bucs have now failed to win in four games since beating TS Galaxy on September 22.

  • Kermit Erasmus, Orlando Pirates, October 2022

    Winners:

    Kermit Erasmus

    After firing in a cracking goal, albeit via a deflection off AmaZulu keeper Veli Mothwa, Erasmus is now up and running after re-joining the club a couple of weeks ago. In dire need of a reliable striker, Pirates will be hoping it's the start of more to come from the former Mamelodi SUuowns and Cape Town City marksman.

    Veli Mothwa

    The AmaZulu keeper was superb and did his Bafana Bafana starting chances no harm with a Man-of-the-Match display. He dominated his box bravely in the air and made some outstanding saves, including a penalty stop.

  • Nkosinathi Sibisi, Orlando Pirates, August 2022

    Losers:

    Nkosinathi Sibsi

    He's been among the best two or three central defenders in the PSL so far this season but undid some of that with a frail defensive display coupled with a penalty miss which ultimately cost Bucs two points.

    Richard Ofori

    Ofori has mixed sublime with some basic errors in recent weeks and with the World Cup coming up, the last thing the Ghana international needed was an injury - which was unfortunately what happened.

  • Innocent Maela, Orlando Pirates, December 2021

    Ratings: Defenders

    Richard Ofori - 6.5/10

    Kept busy with Bucs' defence looking shaky.

    Ofori timed his runs well as he came out to deny Usuthu attackers, but he was unlucky to concede a penalty after colliding with Lehlohonolo Majoro and he conceded from the spot-kick.

    He was substituted a few minutes after the start due to an injury.

    Bandile Shandu - 6/10

    Looked lively down the right flank - making some promising overlapping runs, but he picked up an injury that led to his substitution just 22 minutes into the game.

    Deon Hotto - 6.5/10

    Worked hard on the left flank.

    Hotto looked sharp on the overlap as he created chances with his accurate crosses. He also tracked back to help his teammates defend while operating as a left wing-back.

    Olisa Ndah - 5.5/10

    Looked shaky as he was tormented by his countryman Augustine Chidi Kwem.

    The Nigerian defender struggled to contain Kwem, especially in the first half, but he was a threat in AmaZulu's box. Ndah was sublimely denied by Mothwa in stoppage time.

    Nkosinathi Sibisi - 4.5/10

    Poor display. Sibisi's defensive weaknesses were exposed by Majoro who was a constant threat to the Bucs defence. Sibisi's poorly taken penalty was easily saved by Mothwa.

    Innocent Maela - 6.5/10

    Played much better than his fellow centre-backs in a three-man defence.

    Maela was able to cover for attack-minded full-back Hotto and he won his ground and aerial duels. He was also vocal as he organised the Bucs defence.

  • Ben Motshwari, Orlando Pirates, March 2022

    Ratings: Midfielders

    Miguel Timm - 6/10

    Started slowly as he failed to protect the Bucs defence.

    Timm was lucky not to concede a penalty after fouling Kwem in Bucs' box, but he improved after the restart. He became strong in possession and impeded Usuthu's movement with well-timed tackles.

    Ben Motshwari - 5/10

    Failed to impress on his return to the team.

    Motshwari was outclassed by Keagan Buchanan in their midfield battle as Bucs struggled to take full control of the game in the first half. He was substituted at half-time.

  • Kermit Erasmus, Orlando Pirates, October 2022

    Ratings: Strikers

    Kermit Erasmus - 7/10

    Showed his class on his second full debut for Pirates.

    Erasmus was in the thick of things when Bucs ventured forward - creating problems for the Usuthu defence with his movement and incisive passes.

    His shot led to Mothwa's own goal.

    He could be the solution to Pirates' scoring problem.

    Monnapule Saleng - 5.5/10

    Handful for the AmaZulu full-backs.

    Saleng used his pace and dribbling ability to beat defenders and get into threatening positions, but he couldn't create any meaningful chances for his side. He hit the upright with a well-taken free-kick.

    Ndabayithethwa Ndlondlo - 5.5/10

    Brought much-needed intensity to the press.

    Ndlondlo dribbled past opponents on a couple of occasions and drew fouls in dangerous areas, but he was wasteful in the final third - failing to beat Mothwa from close range.

  • Fortune Makaringe Orlando Pirates 2022.

    Ratings: Subs

    Fortune Makaringe - 6/10

    Came on for Shandu in the first half and put in a decent performance.

    Makaringe carried the team forward and he was involved in the build-up to Pirates' goal as he set up Erasmus.

    Kabelo Dlamini - 6/10

    Looked sharp and made good runs to get into dangerous positions after he came on at half-time and also took a few shots at goal - forcing Man of the Match Mothwa into a decent save.

    Siyabonga Mpontshane - 5/10

    Introduced in the 55th minute and he looked rusty - failing to deal with aerial balls, but apart from that he was not seriously tested.

    Kwame Peprah - 5.5/10

    Full of running when he came on in the 75th minute, but chances didn't fall for him in Usuthu's box.

    Paseka Mako - 5/10

    Made a few forward runs on the left flank without really posing a threat to the AmaZuu defence having been introduced with 15 minutes left.