The Buccaneers have found the back of the net only once in their last five matches and that’s a poor record by a team that has the league’s leading scorer in its line-up.
ORLANDO Pirates have been enduring a woeful run in front of goals since the resumption of the season and coach Josef Zinnbauer is pinning his hopes on the return of Thembinkosi Lorch.
The Buccaneers have, in fact, found the back of the net only once in their last five matches and that’s a poor record by a team that has the league’s leading scorer in its line-up.
Gabadinho Mhango tops the scoring chart with 14 goals but the goals have dried up for the Malawian in recent fixtures.
Striker Tshegofatso Mabasa broke the duck for the Sea Robbers in the 1-1 stalemate with Baroka FC on Tuesday following a four match streak without a goal.
That match also witnessed the return of Lorch who was suspended for the first two games of the bio-bubble after breaching the regulations.
“Lorch is a top player not only in our team but in the whole league,” Zinnbauer said.
“We have him back now and we will use the quality that he has in the next games. Yes, that’s for sure.”
Lorch, who was voted the footballer of the season last term, hasn’t been at his best since the restart.
Previously, not only did he dazzle in the colours of Pirates, he also showed the same consistency in the Bafana Bafana colours in the 2019 edition of the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) where he netted the winner to bundle the hosts, Egypt, out of the tournament in the last-16 stage of the competition.
With Pirates struggling with goals, Lorch will be looking to rediscover his goalscoring prowess for the Sea Robbers in the remaining four matches.
“We all saw what qualities Lorch can bring into the game but for me the results are not good,” Zinnbauer stated.
On Tuesday, Lorch started from the bench and made his way into the pitch after the interval.
“It is important for us (now that he is back) but the fitness level is the question mark. That’s why we decided to start him on the bench,” Zinnabuer explained.
The German was elated that his side finally ended their goalscoring drought against Baroka but, as can be expected, he was not satisfied with a draw.
The Buccaneers are now fourth on the log with 46 points after 26 games. Their remaining games are against Cape Town City, SuperSport United, Maritzburg United and Stellenbosch FC.