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Orlando Pirates legend Gwabeni makes outrageous PSL prediction that will shock Mamelodi Sundowns fans

18:36 SAST 2022/10/07
Kermit Erasmus, Orlando Pirates & Grant Kekana, Mamelodi Sundowns, October 2022
Orlando Pirates legend Shakes Gwabeni has tipped the club to pip Mamelodi Sundowns to the Premier Soccer League title this season.
  • Gwabeni confident of Bucs’ success
  • Retired midfielder lauds coach Jose Riveiro’s work
  • Described Soweto giants proper team

WHAT HAPPENED? Currently, Bucs are fourth on the table with 14 points, while Masandawana have maintained an impressive run and are top with 19.

The sides – who are yet to meet in a league match this season – recently clashed in the MTN8 first-leg semi-final which ended up producing a goalless draw before the second-leg tie that will be held at the Peter Mokaba Stadium on October 22.

Although the Soweto giants suffered a 2-0 setback against Sekhukhune United in their last league outing, Gwabeni – who was signed by Pirates in 1989 from Cosmos – has faith in the club’s title hopes.

WHAT HAS BEEN SAID: "It’s not a train smash as people make it sound like," Gwabeni said, as quoted by KickOff.

"Obviously, the red card [against Sekhukhune] played a role in how the game went and maybe some bad decisions were taken, but I think Pirates have been well-coached this season.

"Sundowns is the goal for everyone. They’ve set a standard that the other teams must now try and overcome, but I look at Pirates this season and I see a proper team. I see a team that is capable of overthrowing Sundowns and winning the league this season."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Although Gwabeni is hopeful that his former club can emerge as league champions, Bucs – four-time PSL winners - must work even harder if they are to dethrone Sundowns, who have been a dominant side in the PSL era.

The Soweto giants, who last lifted the title in 2011/12, came close in the 2017/18 and 2018/19 seasons when they finished as runners-up on both occasions when the Brazilians emerged as champions.

Buoyed by their successes in the last five campaigns, Sundowns are looking like favourites to retain the title once again, as Pirates are trying to find balance under coach Jose Riveiro, whose work so far has received Gwabeni’s praise.

WHAT IS MORE FOR PIRATES: After their loss against Sekhukhune United, Pirates will be back for league action on Saturday when they entertain in-form and second-placed Richards Bay.

Sundowns will be engaged in a Caf Champions League match as they are scheduled to play La Passe of Seychelles on Sunday.