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Orlando Pirates players don’t know culture of the team - Lekgwathi on Soweto giants' limitations

22:46 EAT 03/12/2022
Lucky Lekgwathi, Orlando Pirates, 2019
Orlando Pirates legend Lucky Lekgwathi believes that current team has few leaders and that there are players who don't know the club's culture.
  • Lekgwathi revealed what made Bucs’ treble-winning team tick 
  • Phinda Mzala remains the last Pirates captain to lift the PSL title in 2012
  • The retired defender feels that there are a lot of newcomers at Bucs

WHAT HAPPENED? The Buccaneers won this season's MTN8 title and there has been talk of the team going on to complete a domestic treble by clinching the PSL championship and Nedbank Cup.
Nicknamed Phinda Mzala, Lekgwathi was an integral member of the Bucs side that made history by winning back to back domestic trebles between 2011 and 2012 under his leadership as club captain.
The 46-year-old explained that they had a lot of experienced players with leadership skills in the squad hence they were able to dominate South African football.

UPDATED PSL FIXTURES: “The difference is that if you look at my team they were leaders from the back until the upfront,” Lekgwathi told Far Post.

“You look at the goalkeeping department, we had the likes of Moeneeb [Josephs] who was a seasoned campaigner and Senzo [Meyiwa] who was playing for Bafana Bafana.

“In the middle, we had people like Benson Mhlongo when he was at his peak, and we also had Jali [Andile] and Oupa [Manyisa] who were like leaders even them. They were bulldozers in the middle of the park, having played against top midfielders like Simphiwe Tshabalala and Reneilwe Letsholonyane and were able to stabilise them," he continued.

“Upfront we had Benni [McCarthy], you talk about someone who won the Uefa Champions League in the team. Whenever he speaks, everyone listens. We also had Thulasizwe Mbuyane and Daine Klate, who was the most decorated player until Hlompho [Kekana] came in and overtook him.

“It was a team of senior players combined with youngsters. But now if you look at the current team they are only a few senior players and some of the players don’t know the culture of the team," he added.

“When we won the treble, I had already played 10 to 12 seasons at the club and others had about five seasons, but now only a few players have played about five seasons and for me, that’s the difference.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Pirates are currently placed fifth on the PSL standings - nine points behind leaders Mamelodi Sundowns who have a game in hand.

The Buccaneers will have to close the gap between them and Sundowns if they are to stand any chance to winning their third treble in the PSL era.

The Nedbank Cup will present Bucs with an opportunity to win another cup competition with the tournament scheduled to start next month.

WHAT IS NEXT FOR PIRATES? The Buccaneers have resumed training and they are busy with their preparations for their titanic PSL encounter against Sundowns on December 30.

The PSL break was enforced by the ongoing Fifa World Cup finals taking place in Qatar.