Orlando Pirates coach Josef Zinnbauer has provided an update on injury concerns ahead of his side’s MTN8 opener against Swallows FC.
The Buccaneers will begin their title defence when they welcome the Dube Birds to the Orlando Stadium in the quarter-finals on Saturday.
However, Zinnbauer revealed that Tshegofatso Mabasa and Zakhele Lepasa won’t be fit in time for the Soweto derby but insists that Thembinkosi Lorch could feature, despite struggling with a should problem.
"We have a little problem with a few players but it's normal in pre-season [Innocent] Maela is not training but we'll get information [about his fitness] soon," Zinnbauer told the media at the pre-match press conference.
"Lorch has a shoulder problem and was out yesterday, today we tried and I think he'll be fine for the weekend. Lepasa and Mabasa won't be part [of the squad] this weekend but [Tshegofatso] Mabasa is closer, he's started training sessions with the team.
"Ofori came back [to training] yesterday, he had a problem with the eye after a ball to the face but it's fine, I think he's back on the weekend and Maela I hope as well."
The German mentor also confirmed that Zakhele Lepasa will be out of contention as he needs time to mend his way back to full fitness from a “really difficult injury”.
"Lepasa is far from [returning] for us. We're speaking about months, not days or weeks, months. He needs the time, he had a really difficult injury," the German tactician concluded.
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