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Time for Orlando Pirates trio to step up

22:46 GMT+4 07/04/2022
Thembinkosi Lorch, Orlando Pirates, April 2019
The Buccaneers managed to scrape a 1-0 win over Sekhukhune United on Wednesday night, thanks to an 82nd minute goal from Fortune Makaringe

Despite having an impressive array of attacking talent, Orlando Pirates have never really felt like they've fired on all cylinders in midweek.

Makaringe had combined nicely with fellow substitutes Tshegofatso Mabasa and Thembinkosi Lorch when scoring the goal and finished sublimely. Before that, Bucs had looked flat in attack.

The trio certainly made an excellent impact, and it just feels like Bucs are a more creative and entertaining side when the likes of Lorch and Makaringe are at their best and feeding off each other.

This has proven to be the case over the past couple of years, but Makaringe has not really found his best form consistently this term, while Lorch has had injury problems and a couple of disciplinary issues on top of that.

A regular for Bafana two or three years back, Lorch is arguably one of the best and most exciting players to watch in the PSL.

Like Lorch, Makaringe has loads of skill and when on top of his game, contributes well with both goals and assists.

The problem is that Pirates have not seen the two combining enough this season, but perhaps now, at this key stage of the season, they are both ready to find their best form again.

Too much expected of Hotto?

For most of the past two seasons, Deon Hotto has been Orlando Pirates' go-to man when it comes to goals and assists.

He has been outstanding this season but of late he's not been his usual self, and against Sekhukhune, the Namibian had a penalty saved.

Hotto needs help with shouldering the goalscoring burden, and perhaps also could do with a little bit of rest just to freshen up.

Still no Mhango

Kwame Peprah has become an automatic starter up front for Bucs, but while the young Ghanaian enjoyed a purple patch around Christmas, he's been struggling to find the net of late.

Meanwhile, seemingly as a result of some kind of off-the-field issue that co-coach Mandla Ncikazi has eluded to but not elaborated on, Gabadinho Mhango very seldomly even makes the matchday 18.

He's surely Pirates' most obvious attacking threat, a former PSL top scorer of the season.

If the Bucs coaches deem Mhango not ready, then perhaps it's time that Mabasa - someone who has shown good promise but who has battled with injury, gets the chance to start.

With a busy schedule ahead - continental and domestic, now is a great time for the likes of Lorch, Mabasa and Makaringe to play to their full capacities and to take responsibility for Pirates' fortunes.