November 24, 2020

We can’t doubt suspended Lorch’s commitment to Orlando Pirates – Makhanya

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Duku Duku discussed the attacker’s performance in the current season which has resumed following a break which was enforced by the coronavirus

Orlando Pirates legend Joseph ‘Duku Duku’ Makhanya says the club’s decision to suspend Thembinkosi Lorch and Justin Shonga should be respected.

The two attackers have been suspended by the club due to disciplinary issues and they are set to miss the action on the field of play for the rest of the current 2019/20 season.

The Buccaneers made the announcement ahead of their PSL clash with Mamelodi Sundowns which ended in a 0-0 draw on Tuesday night. 

“Yeah, I saw the statement from the club regarding the suspension of the two players, but we don’t know the real reason behind their suspension,” Makhanya told Goal

“However, Pirates is a professional club. All professional clubs have a code of conduct. Players have a responsibility to ensure that they abide by the club’s code of conduct.

“So, if the club decides that whatever they have done is enough to warrant a suspension, then we have to respect the club’s decision.” 

Lorch has struggled to replicate the form which saw him clinch the PSL Footballer of the Season and Players’ Player of the Season awards at the end of the previous campaign.

The 27-year-old winger has looked a shadow of his former self this season having admitted that he was disappointed after he failed to secure a move to an overseas club earlier this season.

Some believe Lorch is unhappy at the Houghton-based side with the club having rejected offers from overseas after the gifted player was linked with Belgian sides Royal Union Saint-Gilloise and Club Brugge, and French clubs Dijon Football and Toulouse FC.

Makhanya, who was on the books of Pirates’ first team between 2000 and 2011 as a fan favourite, believes Lorch is still committed to the Buccaneers. 

“No, not at all. It has nothing to do with the player’s commitment because he has worked hard for the team this season,” the 38-year-old retired winger said.

“When you play for a big club like Pirates you have to respect the jersey and wear it with pride. You also have to respect the club’s badge.”

The Bafana Bafana international has netted only one goal in 17 league appearances this term compared to the nine he netted from 26 games last season.

“The fact that his performance has dipped this season doesn’t mean that he is unhappy at Pirates. He has shown the same commitment he displayed last season,” Makhanya added.

“It’s just that things have not gone his way this season. It happens in football. Whenever I have watched him play I have seen a player, who is committed on the pitch.”

Lorch was signed by Pirates from then-National First Division (NFD) club Maluti FET College in 2015 and he spent the first round of the 2016/17 season on loan at Chippa United