Pirates floating on a sinking ship

Menzi Magubane

If getting defeated in the Soweto Derby by Kaizer Chiefs wasn’t bad enough, only days later Orlando Pirates were kicked out of the Nedbank Cup.

They lost 5-4 on penalties to Marumo Gallants on Wednesday night – leaving the coaches Mandla Ncikazi and Fadlu Davids facing an unhappy management team and angry fans.

Even before the Gallants match, the two coaches were already skating on thin ice and now things could turn really ugly for them. They will have to answer to the club management, who are clearly not happy with their recent results.

It is no secret that Pirates fans were never supportive of Ncikazi and David’s appointments, after the departure of Josef Zinnbauer early this season.

They were under pressure from the word go and now the Nedbank Cup elimination leaves them with a headache they do not need.

The Buccaneers have been out of the DStv Premiership title race as well. They are in fourth place on the log table and 19 points behind leaders Mamelodi Sundowns.

Ncikazi and Davids do however have one last chance to earn themselves a dignified exit at the Bucs, should the management decide to let them go at the end of the season.

They are well on course to progress to the CAF Confederations Cup knockout stages.

If they can lift the Confederations Cup for the Bucs, their names will be written in the history books as the club’s first coaches to do so. But before that however, they still have few games to play – with the tough group stages around the corner.

On Sunday they host Royal Leopards from Eswatini in the second leg of Group B at Orlando Stadium. Kickoff is 6pm.

The Bucs players would feel they should win this one again, after coming from two goals down to win 6-2 away in the first leg two weeks ago.

A win for the Buccaneers, who are second with six points after three matches, will take them closer to qualify for the knockout stages.

Image source: @SowetanLIVE