Orlando Pirates coach Josef Zinnbauer and in-form striker Gabadinho Mhango were the recipients of Absa Premiership awards for January.

The German mentor is yet to taste defeat in the league since arriving at the club in late December, and guided them to a dream run in his first full month, with the Malawian marksman central to the team’s success.

Zinnbauer and Mhango bag monthly awards

Zinnbauer was named the Coach of the Month, with Mhango receiving the Player of the Month award at the Premier Soccer League (PSL) headquarters in Parktown on Thursday afternoon.

Orlando Pirates duo rewarded for dream run

The Buccaneers duo received the accolades for their role in helping the club finish January with four wins and a draw in January.

The only blemish in Pirates’ record during the month came in their first fixture of the year, when they were held to a 1-1 draw by Bloemfontein at Dr Molemela Stadium.

They since went on to claim victory in their remaining matches, even bagging the big scalp of reigning league champions Mamelodi Sundowns by beating them at Orlando Stadium.

During this period, Mhango stood head and shoulders above all in the league in terms of goals scored, finding the net no less than six times on his way to topping the league’s scoring charts.

The 27-year-old bagged a first-half hat-trick during a 4-1 thumping of Polokwane City, and now stands at 14 league goals in 18 matches, and was a notable absentee when Pirates lost on penalties in the Nedbank Cup Round of 32 clash against Bidvest Wits.

The Soweto giants are second on the league standings, having overcome an indifferent start to the campaign ahead of Zinnbauer’s arrival.

The 49-year-old first took charge ahead of their home clash against Black Leopards, guiding the club to a 3-1 win, adn has since gone of to win five of his six matches in charge.

Pirates next travel to Thohoyandou Stadium, where they will renew rivalries with Lidoda Duvha on Sunday. Kick-off is at 15:30 (SAST).

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