Irvin Khoza: Happy Jele still has role to play at Orlando Pirates

Khoza has stressed the importance of having the 32-year-old defender in the Bucs squad, ahead of the 2019/20 PSL season

Orlando Pirates chairman Irvin Khoza has explained why the club decided to keep Happy Jele.

The experienced defender's current contract with the Buccaneers is due to expire at the end of this month.

Khoza, who is also the chairman of the Premier Soccer League (PSL), praised Jele for showing his commitment and hardwork.

Jele, 32, was signed by Pirates from Walter Stars in 2006 and he has since helped the club win two PSL titles as well as five cup competitions.

“Jele is still a Pirates player. We haven’t said anything about him. What he has achieved with the team is highly admirable," Khoza was quoted as saying by IOL.

The Bucs captain led the team to a second place finish in both the PSL and Telkom Knockout Cup during the 2018/19 South African season. 

"You can see that he is doing his best. He still has a role to play, unless he feels that his legs are tired,” he continued.

“The boy has acquitted himself well as the captain and as a player which is quite humbling. He came here when he was very young.

"He is now the captain of Pirates and it is a good story on his side.

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“Unfortunately, he got injured towards the end of the season. He lost a bit of time. But he is trying to make up for that, I don’t know but maybe."

Jele was a regular for the Soweto giants last season,featuring in 29 matches in the league and also played in six cup matches

He led Pirates to the 2018/19 Caf Champions League group stages.