Orlando Pirates coach Zinnbauer bemoans unlucky Mamelodi Sundowns defeat

Josef Zinnbauer, Orlando Pirates, December 2020Backpagepix

Orlando Pirates head coach Josef Zinnbauer believes that luck wasn’t on his team's side in their defeat by Mamelodi Sundowns on Saturday afternoon. 

The Buccaneers recorded their maiden defeat of the season when they suffered a 1-0 loss to Masandawana in a PSL match which took place in Tshwane. 

Zinnbauer watched on as Bucs created chances which they failed to take at Loftus Versfeld Stadium and he felt that his side was unlucky on the day.

"Set-pieces, goal, it's always difficult. We know against Sundowns. All the little luck in think in the first half we were good in the game," Zinnbauer told SuperSport TV.  "We had a lot of opportunities to score the first goal. Second half we did what we can.

"Played forward, chances yes, but not enough of the final shot or final pass."

Current PSL Golden Boot holder Frank Mhango was brilliantly denied by Sundowns goalkeeper Denis Onyango in the closing stages of the match, before striker Jean-Marc Makusu failed to control the ball in a one-on-one situation with the Uganda international. 

"We gave it all in our last 20 minutes, and when you do that, they could hit us on the counter. Then we had a little luck. I'm disappointed," he continued. "We did a lot of work, it was not a bad performance. But yeah we had not the goal that we need. I think if we scored in the first half, we could have won the game."

Full-back Wayde Jooste was substituted at half-time by Zinnbauer and the German tactician explained why he introduced midfielder Siphesihle Ndlovu, who was deployed in the right-back position. 

"It was a tactical aspect. We needed a goal. We know Ndlovu is flexible, he can play as a six or as an eight," he added. "This was the reason we changed at half-time. We wanted more offensive options. It wasn't just Ndlovu. It was the whole team.

"We had the opportunities but we didn't score and then it's not possible you can win a game."

Pirates have now turned their attention to their Caf Confederation Cup first round second-leg game against Angolan side Sagrada Esperanca.

The match will be played in Soweto, Johannesburg on January 6 and Bucs are leading 1-0 in aggregate. 

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