Musa Nyatama in, Jackson Mabokgwane out: Who should stay or leave Orlando Pirates?

With the winter transfer window fast approaching, Goal takes a look at Bucs players who should be kept and those who should be released

Orlando Pirates were an improved side during the 2017/18 season as they competed for the most coveted trophy in the country, the Premier Soccer League (PSL) title.

The Buccaneers had to settle for the number two spot after Mamelodi Sundowns beat them to the trophy and subsequently qualified for next season's Caf Champions League as a consolation prize.

Milutin 'Micho' Sredojevic has stated that they will have to make changes to the squad as they are set to compete in four competitions (League, Nedbank Cup, Telkom Knockout Cup and MTN8 Cup) next season.

Goal takes a look at the players who should stay and leave ahead of the July-August transfer window:


Jackson Mabokgwane

Jackson Mabokgwane, Orlando Pirates 

The 30-year-old was given enough time to make Pirates’ number one spot his own, but he failed to do so as he kept making mistakes and he was dropped. The error-ridden goalkeeper looks set to be offloaded by the club this winter.

Wayne Sandilands 

The experienced goalkeeper was also dropped by Micho after making some costly mistakes. The 34-year-old is slowly declining and he should make way for a new and young goalkeeper prior to the new campaign. 

Marc Van Heerden 

The former South Africa youth international faced stiff competition in the left-back position and he fell further down the pecking order following the arrival of Phetso Maphanga in January 2018. The 30-year-old is destined to leave the Buccaneers in the off season.

Isaa Sarr 

The 30-year-old central midfielder found it difficult to break into Bucs’ match-day squads following Sredojevic's arrival at the Houghton-based club. The Senegal international will want to play regularly and he is set to leave the Buccaneers.

Thamsanqa Gabuza 

The hard-running marksman is another player, who was given a fair chance to prove himself by Sredojevic. However, the 30-year-old struggled for form, and with Thabiso Kutumela set to return from a long-term injury next season, it would be better for Gabuza to leave Bucs.

Ayanda Nkosi 

The 25-year-old striker was surprisingly signed by Pirates from Free State Stars prior to the 2016/17 season and he never proved himself at the Soweto giants. The former Maritzburg United marksman is expected to be offloaded by the Buccaneers.  


Siyabonga Mpontshane 

The experienced goalkeeper was given an opportunity to reclaim his spot in the staring line-up against Kaizer Chiefs last March. The 32-year-old grabbed the opportunity with both hands and he established himself as Pirates’ first-choice keeper. 

Happy Jele 

Happy Jele, Orlando Pirates

The veteran defender reclaimed his place in the Bucs starting line-up midway through the season and he was one of the key players as the team pushed for the league title. His experience will be important during Pirates’ 2018/19 Caf Champions League campaign. 

Musa Nyatama 

The veteran campaigner established himself as one of Pirates’ most important players after joining the club from Bloemfontein Celtic. The 30-year-old will be looking to maintain his excellent displays for Bucs in his second campaign with the club. 

Riyaad Norodien 

The skillful winger is another playe, who struggled with injuries at Bucs last season, but he did relatively well at Platinum Stars on loan from the Soweto giants in the second round. The 23-year-old will be keen to stay injury free and establish himself as a key player at Pirates.

Thamsanqa Sangweni

The midfielder remains a highly-rated player despite having struggled for game time in his first season with Bucs. The 28-year-old will have to save his Pirates career in pre-season.


Siphumelele Mbulu 

The holding midfielder is a very promising player, but he faces stiff competition in central midfield from Nyatama, Mlambo and Munetsi. The 19-year-old player would benefit from a loan spell at another PSL club.

Article continues below

Lyle Foster 

Orlando Pirates striker Lyle Foster

The teenage striker is a player with a lot of potential having caught the eye in his first season in the top flight league. But a loan spell at a PSL club would do the 18-year-old forward a world of good next season.