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Orlando Pirates sign three youngsters and send them to train with Chelsea

18:15 IST 31/07/2019
Stamford Bridge corner flag
The Buccaneers have been conducting a massive youth identification campaign, covering 10 regions across South Africa

The Shield Sbonis’iDiski selections climaxed after a three-day camp at Tuks High Performance Centre in Pretoria on Wednesday afternoon.

Amogelang Matebisi, Cassius Spandelel and Thandanani Tshabalala were the three young players selected by Pirates, Shield and the London club to train with Chelsea FC.

Only one of the players was initially meant to earn a contract with Orlando Pirates FC's Multichoice Diski Challenge team, but due to the high standards this year, all three of them will join Bucs.

The programme has attracted over 11 000 entrants in the past three years and readers can view videos of the winners being announced on stage. 

“The Shield Sbonis’iDiski football programme has changed many lives and it has been great to have a front-row seat to experience the impact that this programme has in many aspiring football players lives,” Shield head coach Dumisani Thusi stated in a media release.

"The programme this year saw passionate players, with one specific hopeful who showed so much hunger during these scouting sessions on and off-field that he was undoubtedly selected for the top 25 at first sight. That is the level of passion and drive we need to see for hopefuls to make it."

There are also videos of the action between the Orlando Pirates MDC team and a side chosen from the 25 best players from the current Shield camp.

“This year, finals week is meant to mentally and physically prepare players for the real world of football by not only putting them against a real development team but also by coaching, guiding and mentoring them to always be dedicated to becoming quality players,” said Laurence Griffin, the International Development Officer of Chelsea FC Foundation.