Orlando Pirates legend Lucky Lekgwathi has called on the club to swoop on Bafana Bafana duo Andile Jali and Thulani Hlatshwayo in order to strengthen for the 2018/19 season.
The Buccaneers enjoyed a vast improvement this past season, with new coach Micho Sredojevic and assistants Rhulani Mokwena and Benson Mhlongo making the team tic
After ending a disgraceful 12th-place in 2016/17 – their worst ever season in the PSL era, the ship was steered towards a respectable second spot in a matter of just 12 months.
Pirates also closely competed with Mamelodi Sundowns for the Absa Premiership title in the final few games, but were undone perhaps by their lack of experience in pressure situations.
Now, with plenty of promise lying ahead for next season, Lekgwathi, who famously captained the club to a historic back-to-back treble, initially felt they were lacking up front until Zambian striker Augustine Mulenga announced his arrival with a bang against Bloemfontein Celtic.
“I was thinking the striking force needs strengthening but, after they signed Augustine Mulenga, I think they are now okay because they still have Lyle Foster,” Lekgwathi says.
“They should give him a chance. He’s only 17 years old, so he can learn a lot from players like Mulenga and Justin Shonga.”
‘Bra Slagga’, as Lekgwathi is affectionately known amongst his peers, believes a bit of depth and experience could be useful in midfield and defence as Bucs look to conquer their domestic and continental challenges next season.
“I think the only thing for me, I so wish they can sign Jali to strengthen the midfield, and in the defence I just hope they can get another senior player,” he adds.
“A player like Thulani Hlatshwayo – he’s a leader, obviously, being the captain of Bidvest Wits and Bafana Bafana.
“If we can get a player like that to play with Gladwin Shitolo, Justice Chabalala and Ntsikelelo Nyauza, it will help them a lot because most of them don’t have experience so we often concede soft goals.
“I think a player like Hlatshwayo [will help] … And Jali, his experience of having played for Pirates is also important, so they should give him the armband.”