JOHANNESBURG – Exodus is looming at Orlando Pirates as the Bucanneers are set to reduce their squad following the shopping spree of nine new players.
The club has been busy in this transfer window.
Pirates signed Paseka Mako, Brilliant Khuzwayo, Abel Mabaso, Kudakwashe Mahachi, Linda Mntambo, Asavela Mbekile, Vincent Pule, Ben Motshwari and Meshack Maphangule.
According to the club's chairman, Irvin Khoza the Bucanneers will release a number of players.
“We have to reduce our squad. That is a given but we will make a proper announcement as to who is staying and who is leaving,” Khoza explained.
Pirates are expected to cut ties with the likes of Thamsanqa Gabuza, Thamsanqa Sangweni, Nkosinathi Mthiyane, Thabo Matlaba, Phetso Maphanga, Issa Sarr, Mpho Makola and Wayne Sandilands who all struggled for game time last season.
Pirates showed a major refinement last season as they finished as the league runners up. They will be looking to build in to that foundation come the new season.
“In football you can't expect but you've got to work hard. There is no therefore in football. I think this World Cup has showed us that. It doesn't work like that. You got to work hard and the rest will follow,” Khoza said as he refused to put pressure on Milutin” Micho” Sredojevic to deliver the silverware.
Pirates are in for a long season. They will be also competing in the Caf Champions League as they finished second on the log last season. Domestically they will be competing in the Absa Premiership, MTN 8, Telkom Knockout and the Nedbank Cup.
The Sea Robbers will be looking to end their four season trophy drought with their last piece of silverware coming in 2014 when they lifted the Nedbank Cup at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban.
Asked if they are done in the market, Khoza simply said: “I don't know.”
Pirates are pushing hard to land the services of Bafana Bafana captain Thulani Hlatshwayo who is plying his trade with Bidvest Wits.
The hard-tackling defender is still contracted to Wits as their skipper.