Home Sport Who’s the best choice for Pirates captaincy armband?

Who’s the best choice for Pirates captaincy armband?

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The next full-time captaincy choice is unlikely to go down with all fans of the club and it will definitely be someone new to the armband

an Orlando Pirates soccer player during a training session about to kick the ball
Olisa Ndah may well be the best choice to take over the Sea Robbers captaincy at the moment. Picture: Victor Modo, BackpagePix

Johannesburg – The departure of Happy Jele means that Orlando Pirates will have to appoint a new full-time captain soon.

The next full-time captaincy choice is unlikely to go down with all fans of the club and it will definitely be someone new to the armband given that Thulani Hlatshwayo and Ntsikelelo Nyauza who often deputised for Jele in recent years have also left the club.

Sports correspondent Eshlin Vedan looks at the choices the Sea Robbers can consider to be their next skipper.

Olisa Ndah

Ndah may well be the best choice to take over the Sea Robbers captaincy at the moment. He was a first-team regular and standout performer for the club last season. If other players from the Pirates first team can match the work-rate and consistency of the 24-year-old, they could be trophy contenders sooner rather than later.

The Nigerian is calm and collected under pressure and communicates well with teammates.

Ndah has quickly adapted to life in South African football. The only issue that Pirates may have to consider is whether he is prepared to commit himself to their cause for the long-term.

Having represented the Nigeria senior team twice, Ndah may have to move to Europe soon if he wants to continue winning national team selection, especially as his nation is not short of players playing in top European leagues.

Being in South Africa for the long-term could count against him if he has serious ambitions with the Nigeria national team.

Richard Ofori

Ofori joined Pirates in 2020 after establishing himself as one of the best keepers in South Africa with former club Maritzburg United. He has shown flashes of brilliance at Pirates but not quite yet lived up to expectations.

Ofori is an outspoken leader and perhaps if Pirates show faith in him by handing him the captaincy, his game will rise? We have seen cases of that in the past.

Ofori also needs to find form sooner rather than later if he wants to be part of the Ghana squad that will be headed to the World Cup in Qatar later this year. Being given the Pirates captaincy could be a confidence boost for him in this regard.

Tapelo Xoki

There are not many obvious candidates for the job at the moment and Xoki has only just recently joined the club from AmaZulu. However, the Cape Town born defender has a wealth of experience under his belt.

He is expected to be a first-team regular next season and also has a lot of leadership experience, having previously served as captain of AmaZulu.

Xoki does not yet have a star name but he is a reliable professional who may be able to get the job done. However, it must be added that should he be appointed skipper of Pirates, the pressure that he will face will be far higher than what he experienced at AmaZulu.

When he led Usuthu, the club’s aim was more or less to just avoid relegation.

Rolling captaincy

Should Jose Riveiro and his technical team not see any obvious choices at the moment to take the armband, they can buy themselves time and rotate the armband until someone really puts their hands up for it.

This will come with its challenges and if used, should only be a temporary solution. However, it will allow the technical team time to critique and analyse the leadership styles and efficiency of different players.

@eshlinv

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