Lucky Lekgwathi: the former Orlando Pirates legend statements that define intent of modern professional PSL players

The former Bafana Bafana international stressed the importance of loyalty having spent more than a decade at Bucs.

Orlando Pirates icon Lucky Lekgwathi may have aimed an indirect dig at George Lebese and Oupa Manyisa as he explained why nowadays players do not stay long at a single club.

Lebese and Manyisa began their professional careers at Kaizer Chiefs and Pirates, respectively, where they were cult heroes, before they left the two Soweto giants for big spenders Mamelodi Sundowns in 2017.

Lekgwathi, who achieved legendary status at Pirates during his 12-year spell with the club, feels that nowadays professional footballers play for money instead of representing the badge of the club.

What has been said?

“It is not common because you know today players they are after money. If you remember back then players used to play for a badge, but now players are after money,” Lekgwathi told iDiski Times.

“If you want to play them obviously they will move on another team, and if you check most players want to play for Sundowns because they say it is a team that can play more than anyone.

“So that’s why now people don’t have loyalty because of money. This is why sometimes we have to learn from our bosses that you mustn’t be after money, you must be after loyalty, so that even after playing a certain team you can still go play elsewhere.”

The man nicknamed Phinda Mzala was speaking after his former Pirates teammate Happy Jele, who is one of the few one-club men in the PSL, became the first player to reach 400 appearances for the Soweto giants when he started against Swallows FC over the weekend.

Phinda Mzala refused to reveal the names of players he was taking a dig at with, Lebese and Manyisa having struggled to make a major impact at Sundowns and they were released by the Tshwane giants.

“But it is 50/50, sometimes it pays, sometimes it doesn’t pay. I think it is nice to stick to one team, because if you can check most players retire at a young age because they don’t want to be loyal to their teams,” he continued.

“If you look at players that have left Orlando Pirates and went to Sundowns or left Kaizer Chiefs and went to Sundowns, where are they today? I don’t want to mention names, they are too many.

“So it teaches us something, but players are players, they won’t change, and they are there to make money to support their families.”

Lebese and Manyisa are currently clubless, but the latter has been strongly linked with National First Division club Platinum City Rovers.


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