Andrew Sparkes to join Orlando Pirates from Swansea City

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The Soweto giants look set to beef up their technical team ahead of the new season

English Championship side Swansea City AFC have announced that Andrew Sparkes is set to join Premier Soccer League (PSL) giants Orlando Pirates

The highly qualified keeper trainer has been serving as head of the Swansea Academy's goalkeeping department.

The Swans, who were relegated to the Championship from the English Premier League at the end of last season, released the following statement:

A club statement read: "Sparkes departs the Liberty having spent six years in the academy, where he worked with the under-23s and under-18s as well as the club’s younger keepers."

"His new role will be as first-team goalkeeping coach with the Pirates, one of the biggest clubs in South Africa."

"They finished second in the South African league last season and will play in the African Champions League next term."

"Sparkes arrived at the Swans, his home city club, from New York Red Bulls in 2012."

Sparkes stated that it was time for him to leave the Welsh club which he joined from American side New York Red Bulls in 2012.

“After six years at Swansea City, it’s time to move on to the next challenge,” he said. 

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According to Sparkes' personal website, the trainer holds a Uefa B Goalkeeper Licence and Uefa B Licence, but is currently "on his Uefa A Licence". 

“I’m so thankful for the opportunity the club has given me. I’ve been so lucky to work with so many talented players and excellent staff during my time," he concluded.

Ivica Vukusic has been serving as Pirates first team keeper coach since last year and it remains to be seen whether or not he will remain with the club heading into the 2018/19 season.

The Croatian joined the Buccaneers along with current head coach Milutin 'Micho' Sredojevic prior to the start of the 2017/18 campaign.

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