Orlando Pirates collect 14th draw of season

Orlando Pirates and Bloemfontein Celtic played to a goalless draw in their Absa Premiership match played at the Dr Molemela Stadium in Bloemfontein on Wednesday evening.

The Buccaneers have now played 14 draws in 28 league outings this season.

With the exception of a powerful shot at goal from midfielder Dove Wome in the 42nd minute, which brought the best out of Celtic goalkeeper Patrick Tignyemb, who tipped the ball over the crossbar, Pirates seldom looked like scoring, with even their leading marksman Tendai Ndoro, with 12 league goals this season, looking short of support and ideas upfront.

Second half substitute Thamsanqa Gabuza had a chance to claim all three points in the dying moments of the match but failed to control the ball at the crucial moment, with Tignyemb collecting easily.

Senegalese midfielder Issa Sarr and Mpho Makola tried their best to get Pirates going forward, but little quality supply went the way of Ndoro.

Pirates No 1 Jackson Mabokgwane also had one of his quieter outings, with the hosts looking happy to walk away with a point from the drawn result, to take them to 27 points and on the verge of being out of the relegation tussle that is happening below them on the league table.

Mabokgwane will be happy to have left Bloemfontein with his first clean sheet in three outings, with only Highlands Park (42 goals) having conceded more than the 38 of Pirates and Baroka, in the league this season.

Coming into the match off back-to-back league losses to Bidvest Wits and Mamelodi Sundowns, Pirates coach Kjell Jonevret will need no reminding that Pirates have now gone 295 minutes of league football without finding the back of their opponent’s net, since defender Thabo Matlaba scored in the 2-1 win over Chippa United on April 29.

The reality is that Pirates will have to collect a fullhouse of six points from their remaining two league fixtures (at home to Ajax Cape Town on May 21 and away to Golden Arrows six days later) if they are to be assured of a Top-8 finish.

Pirates now have 32 points from 28 matches, with Celtic on 27 points from 27 games.