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Orlando Pirates 'split' rumours unfair

15:28 GMT 30/01/2022
Terrence Dzukamanja of Orlando Pirates challenges Philip Ndlondlo of Marumo Gallants.
After an unconvincing first few months of the season, the Buccaneers were actually in good form leading up to the Christmas break

There's been talk about Orlando Pirates having issues of favouritism, division or cliques within the squad.

Overall this season though it could be said that Bucs have not found their best XI - that they've lacked consistency, never really reached any great heights, and not looked like a bet for any kind of silverware.

In recent weeks, some former Pirates players have alluded to a possible division in the Pirates camp.

Another accusation was a problem of team selection consistency from the coaching staff as a result of having co-coaches, instead of the usual head coach with an assistant.

However, there have not been any obvious issues between the coaches - former Maritzburg United duo Fadlu Davids and Mandla Ncikazi and it’s questionable as to how much truth there actually is to the talk of problems at Pirates.

One just has to look at Mamelodi Sundowns to see how having co-coaches seems to work pretty well.

Of course, there is a chance that there are differences of opinion and perhaps some players who feel unhappy at Pirates at the moment. There may even be certain cliques in the camp, in terms of friendship groups.

But none of that is unusual in a football team, or indeed any business - when there are upwards of 50 employees, there's bound to be some issues and personality clashes. It's only natural for example, that players not getting game-time may become temperamental. It's part of football.

The injury factor should also not be overlooked, Pirates have had more than their share to contend with which is a valid reason we've not really seen Pirates' strongest XI together this season.

Upturn in form

It must also be noted that the Sea Robbers are currently second on the PSL standings, after a good run of form in December and November.

They were just starting to find some rhythm and had been looking good as some players returned from injury and some of the new signings began to make a real impact.

Perhaps what hasn't helped Ncikazi and Davids - who replaced Josef Zinnnbauer on a sort of interim basis - is that they were never officially handed the job and the vote of confidence which that would have brought.

And so with their position an uncertain one, there is more room for speculative talk about problems within the camp. The next few months, and how Pirates fare, should give us a clearer idea.