Alfred Ndengane, who finally made his official debut for Orlando Pirates this week, has described the three months he spent without playing competitive PSL football as frustrating.
Ndengane has been at Pirates since October, following his exit from Bloemfontein Celtic earlier this season. However, the defender had to wait until the January transfer window to open to be cleared to play, as at the time he joined Bucs last year, it was outside of the transfer window.
Ndengane was handed his official debut in Milutin Sredojevic’s team against Chippa United on Tuesday, as the Soweto giants beat the Eastern Cape outfit 4-2 at the Orlando Stadium.
“I joined the Club towards the end of last year and obviously since this was outside of the transfer window I could not play immediately,” Ndengane told Pirates’ official website.
“Initially it was frustrating because it is every player’s dream to play. Nobody wants to sit on the sidelines for whatever reason but it was also my reality. After eventually coming to terms with the reality of my situation, I decided to make use of the time to familiarise myself with my new surroundings,” he added.
“The support I received from my teammates, the coaches and even from management was pivotal and encouraged me to be more patient and wait my turn. My family has also been very supportive, without them I don’t think that I would have been able to deal with the situation of not playing,” the 31-year-old told Bucs’ website.
The defender has discussed playing alongside team captain and club veteran Happy Jele in the heart of Pirates defence.
“It was nice to play next to Happy. This is someone that I’ve had many duels with during my time at Celtic - it was nice to be fighting on the same side for a change. My debut was special for many reasons. For starters, it was at Orlando Stadium - the home of South African football and it was also a game where we collected three points,” he added.