October 23, 2021

Lekgwathi: Orlando Pirates’ ‘downfall’ on how they use new signings

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The Buccaneers brought in seven new players for the 2021/22 season and a club legend comments on their introduction into the team

Former Orlando Pirates captain Lucky Lekgwathi feels the Soweto giants are blundering in immediately awarding new players with game time.

Pirates signed seven new players for the ongoing season and only Kwanda Mngonyama and Kwame Peprah are yet to play while Monnapule Saleng was sent out on loan to Swallows FC.

Goodman Mosele and Bandile Shandu have quickly established themselves as regulars by starting in all the team’s three Premier Soccer League games.

Nigerian defender Olisa Ndah, a late signing, made his debut last weekend while Ntsako Makhubela has featured just once. 

Lekgwathi feels the players should not be thrown right into the fray but introduced gradually.

“Our downfall is that we sign lots of players, and we want to play them at the same time,” Lekgwathi told iDiski Times.

“But we can introduce them gradually. I think that’s where we are going to do well. Last season if you remember winning the MTN8, we played a few new faces, and we managed to win the MTN8. 

“After that, we started to put new faces in the team, and we started to lose that momentum. I hope this season we can just learn from our mistakes that we mustn’t introduce all the new players, we must introduce them gradually.”

Last season, the likes of Thulani Hlatshwayo, Thabang Monare, Deon Hotto and Terrence Dzvukamanja started with some regular football soon after their arrival at the Buccaneers.

Pirates are bidding for their first league title in a decade and Lekgwathi explains how they handled new arrivals during some of their successful seasons.

“Remember I’m talking from experience, the team after winning the treble the chairman signed some very good players, I’m talking about the likes of Benni McCarthy, Siyabonga Sangweni, Ntshumayelo [Thandani], [Tokelo] Rantie and Thabo Matlaba,” said Lekgwathi.

“We introduced only two players first, Benni and Sangweni, then we won the MTN8 and after some few games we introduced Thabo Matlaba, we introduced Tokelo Rantie, and we managed to win another treble.”

It is yet to be seen if Mngonyama and Peprah will be given a run when Pirates visit Chippa United on Saturday.