New Orlando Pirates coach Josef Zinnbauer has been tasked with the responsibility of restoring the Buccaneers to the pinnacle of South African football.
The Sea Robbers have endured hard times lately and last won a trophy of significance five years ago with numerous coaches having come and gone without delivering the goods.
The club’s administrative manager, Floyd Mbele, has stated that they want Zinnbauer to win silverware.
“At a big club like Orlando Pirates the mandate is always the same. You don’t have to explain the mandate. You need to come to win trophies. That’s what the club is about,” Mbele saidtated.
Pirates cut ties with Milutin Sredojevic at the initial stage of the season and placed his assistant, Rhulani Mokwena, in the caretaker coach position.
But the Buccaneers struggled under the guidance of the young yet highly rated tactician that is Mokwena, despite playing some promising football.
Pirates were bundled out of the MTN8, CAF Champions League and the Telkom Knockout under his regime. In 14 matches, he managed only six victories, four draws and four losses across all the competitions.
“When Rhulani took over, he did so as an interim coach. We announced that we are searching for a new coach and when the time is right we would announce him. We didn’t announce the new coach because of the results,” he added, denying suggestions that the German was brought in because of Mokwena’s failure to deliver .
Pirates are sixth on the log with 17 points after 13 league outings. They are 17 points behind log leaders Kaizer Chiefs.
Asked if they would have appointed Zinnbauer had Pirates been top of the table, Mbele replied: “It would have been a different story but let us not talk about something that we are not sure of. Let’s talk about the reality for now.”
Mokwena will revert to his position as an assistant coach alongside Fadlu Davids. He will continue to steer the ship until the new coach get his work permit.
Pirates host Black Leopards in their last game of the year next weekend at Orlando Stadium, and Mokwena will be keen to get out on a positive note.
Struggling as they are, don’t expect Pirates to do a lot of business during the transfer window period. “We will look to that. Let us give the new coach an opportunity to settle and then we will discuss which players he wants to keep. But with the squad that we have, pound for pound we can compete on all fronts,” Mbele said.
Zinnbauer will aim to bring back the glory days, which is something that the previous six managers failed to deliver.