Orlando Pirates announced the signings of nine new players earlier this week, but where will they all fit in?
We look at where each player is likely to slot in, and if they’ve got a chance of playing regularly.
He was in the shadow of Itumeleng Khune at Kaizer Chiefs, but he could finally get a chance to be the main man in goal at Pirates. Bucs’ goalkeepers are inconsistent, so Khuzwayo will get an opportunity to make the number one jersey his own. He’s a more reliable option compared to Jackson Mabokgwane, Wayne Sandilands and Siyabonga Mpontshane.
Mbekile loves playing in the middle of the park, but he may have to settle for the right-back position because there is too much competition in central midfield. He has a better chance of playing regularly as a right-back where he’ll compete with Mthokozisi Dube and Diamond Thopola.
The fight for a place at left-back is going to be interesting, following the addition of Mako, who loves to get forward and take players on. Innocent Maela, however, is likely to be first choice, while Phetso Maphanga, another talented player, is knocking on the door. Mako will probably have to settle for limited game-time.
Frustrated with a lack of game-time at Bidvest Wits, Motshwari has made a move to where it’s going to be even harder to get into the team. The Buccaneers have Xola Mlambo and Musa Nyatama bossing the midfield, so Motshwari could find himself as back-up.
The man nicknamed ‘Figo’ comes with a football brain and a knack of scoring crucial goals. He bagged five goals in a short space of time for Chippa last season and can play in the role behind the strikers, just in front of midfielders Nyatama and Mlambo.
Was moved from right-back to a defensive midfielder at Chippa last season and did extremely well. At Pirates, he’ll find that both positions have loads of competition. The good thing is that he gives the coaches options, as he can also play as a central defender.
Coming from the National First Division it will not be easy for this talented player, as was the case for Gift Motupa and Donald Mokondolela. The ex-Black Leopards man may have to be patient before getting a chance to play regularly.
Mahachi can play on the left wing or as a number 10, but Pirates will probably prefer him on the flank. He’s got a similar playing style to Luvuyo Memela, who enjoyed a great 2017/18 campaign. It will be interesting to see who wins the battle to play in the starting line-up. The likes of Thembinkosi Lorch and Thabo Qalinge can also play on the left side of attack.
It’s hard to see Pule playing regularly on the left side of Pirates’ midfield, especially with Memela and Mahachi to fight with for a place in the team.