Mpontshane returns after 97 weeks

Nedbank Cup

Orlando Pirates coach Josef Zinnbauer has explained the decision to bring on goalkeeper Siyabonga Mpontshane in their Nedbank Cup win over Uthongathi FC.

Mpontshane made his first appearance for Pirates in 679 days when he came on as a second-half substitution for the final 15 minutes of their 1-0 win over Uthongathi on Saturday.

The 34-year-old has been frozen out of first team action at the club since last making a sub appearance against Mamelodi Sundowns on April Fool's Day back in 2019.

After returning to the bench ahead of Wayne Sandilands this past weekend, he later replaced Richard Ofori to see out the victory, and Zinnbauer clarified that the change was injury-enforced rather than an attempt at affording the third-choice shot-stopper some game-time.

"No, it was a muscle problem. [Ofori] said he feels muscle [discomfort] a little bit and we protect him so we changed," explained the German tactician after the match.

"It's normal Ofori has to play 90 minutes and it would have better we can make the change with another [outfield] player, but it was not possible."


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