Tshegofatso Mabasa to Sundowns? 5 other Pirates stars who jumped ship to Chloorkop

Orlando Pirates player Relebohile Mofokeng celebrates with Tshegofatso Mabasa after scoring during the Nedbank cup round 16 against Hungry Lions FC at Orlando Stadium. Picture: Itumeleng English/Independent Newspapers.

Orlando Pirates player Relebohile Mofokeng celebrates with Tshegofatso Mabasa after scoring during the Nedbank cup round 16 against Hungry Lions FC at Orlando Stadium. Picture: Itumeleng English/Independent Newspapers.

Published Apr 25, 2024


Orlando Pirates striker Tshegofatso Mabasa is the latest Bucs player who has attracted interest from DSTV Premiership league leaders Mamelodi Sundowns.

Mabasa has been in fine form this season scoring 11 goals and is currently the league’s joint top goal-scorer with Sundowns’ Lucas Ribeiro.

It remains to be seen whether Mamelodi Sundowns will be able to capture the signature of Mabasa after recent media reports suggested the Ka bo Yellow are now competing with Romanian club, Fotbal Club FCSB for his signature.

Should Sundowns succeed in their attempts, Mabasa will join the illustrious list of Orlando Pirates talent that made the switch to Sundowns.

IOL Sport takes a look at some of the hottest Orlando Pirates players who have made the switch to the Brazilians over the years.

Thembinkosi Lorch

Sundowns sanctioned the big-money move for Lorch in January. The controversial dribbling wizard’s move shocked the Bucs faithful, and reportedly had the club’s chairman Irvin Khoza hot under the collar.

Nyoso, as Lorch is known to the Masandawana fans, has since gone on to be a vital cog at Mamelodi Sundowns and has consistently featured in their matches.

Lorch had made a total of 120 appearances for Orlando Pirates, while scoring 18 goals and winning multiple titles, including three MTN 8 trophies. However, that success could not help the Soweto giants keep hold of their talisman, as the star player felt he needed a new environment to take the next crucial step in his career.

Mamelodi Sundowns player Thembinkosi Lorch battles for the ball with Moroka Swallows player Sanou Roland during a DSTV Premiership match at the Dobsonville Stadium. Picture: Itumeleng English/ Independent Newspapers

Teko Modise

Perhaps the biggest signing to move between Parktown and Chloorkop was midfield maestro Teko Modise, when he joined Mamelodi Sundowns in January 2011.

The red-hot Modise had been with the Bucs for four superb seasons, winning titles and major individual honours.

Modise went on to have a largely successful career with the Brazilians, winning two PSL titles and a CAF Champions League title. He now works as an analyst on SuperSport, providing punditry on PSL and Bafana Bafana matches.

The Navigator, as he was affectionately known, had racked up a total of 93 appearances and scored 30 goals for Orlando Pirates, winning an MTN 8 title and back-to-back Telkom Charity Cup titles.

However, a reported fallout with the then Pirates coach Ruud Krol, and subsequent lack of game, time saw the former South African Footballer of the Year make the switch to the Chloorkop.

Mamelodi Sundowns midfielder Teko Modise during his time with Mamelodi Sundowns. Picture: AFP

Oupa Manyisa

The diminutive midfielder joined Sundowns on a three-year deal in August 2017 after making a name for himself at Pirates alongside Andile Jali in midfield.

Manyisa came through the ranks at Orlando Pirates before he made the switch. He spent three seasons at Sundowns, but his spell at the club was plagued by injuries.

He never regained the form he showed at Pirates as he struggled badly for game time.

Manyisa made a staggering 208 appearances and scored 26 goals for the Soweto giants as part of that invincible Pirates side that claimed back-to-back trebles. During his time with the Sea Robbers the midfielder also won the Player of the Season at the club.

He left Orlando Pirates saying he wanted to allow the next crop of young players at the Bucs to get opportunities and that he wanted to take his football to the next level.

Oupa Manyisa shows off the new Mamelodi Sundowns jersey. Photo: Supplied

Lebohang Mokoena

Cheeseboy made the switch to Sundowns in 2009 and went on to make over 70 appearances for Masandawana while scoring 10 goals for the Tshwane-based side. He would have a solid career with the Mamelodi outfit, but his best days were undoubtedly at Pirates.

The skilful right winger made over 90 appearances and scored 13 times in the colours of Orlando Pirates, however had to leave the Soweto giants after a lack of game time at the club.

Gift Leremi

The late Gift Leremi, known as Va-Va Voom, joined the Yellow Nation in 2007 and made a total of two appearances and scored just one goal for the Brazilians before his untimely death after a motor vehicle accident claimed his life.

Before his departure from Pirates, Leremi made a total 70 appearances and scored 15 goals. He also won the Premier Soccer League (PSL ) title in his first season with the Soweto giants.

However allegations of excessive drinking and assault saw the Soweto giants offload the talented player to Sundowns.

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