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Orlando Pirates

Future Of Bucs Veteran In Doubt?

Orlando Pirates are expected to make a decision on the future of one of the club's experienced players.

After a long injury lay-off, prompting his spell on the sidelines, Happy Jele will be working on reclaiming his place as a regular in Pirates’ defence under co-coaches Mandla Ncikazi and Fadlu Davids when the league resumes next month. 

Rumours have ben rife regarding the future of the Bucs veteran, who only made 12 appearances in all competitions so far this season.

Read: Pirates Star On Comeback Trail After Long Absence

Prior to making his return to the starting line-up against Marumo Gallants in December, Jele had missed 10 league matches for Pirates, with his previous match in October against Royal AM.

Jele was outstanding during the DStv Compact Cup, where the 35-year-old was seen captaining the Warriors last weekend with distinction, despite concern surrounding the defender's future. 

The Middelburg-born player has entered into the last six months of his deal after the Buccaneers gave him another one-year contract extension in August last year.  

Read: 'Khune Showed He Is Still One Of The Best’

In addition, due to his long service and dedication to the club over the years, Jele has managed to form a good relationship with club chairman Irvin Khoza and has earned his trust, with the club usually not feeling the pressure of rushing into finalising decisions on his future.

Read – Khanye On Sithebe To Chiefs: I’m Not Going To Be Excited

Indications from sources in the know are that the Pirates have not yet signalled their plans for the veteran, with the focus on closing the gap with Mamelodi Sundowns at the top of the log, the Nedbank Cup and the CAF Confederation Cup competitions. 

Jele is the longest-serving player in Bucs’ current squad, and five months ago after signing the new contract, the skipper had the following to say, “I am happy to have signed a new contract. As a player, I believe I still have a lot more to give and achieve with this club.”  

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