Pirates appoint Maela as captain

Innocent Maela and Richard Ofori have taken on leadership roles with the Orlando Pirates ahead of DStv’s 2022/23 Premier League season.

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Maela has been named club captain while Ofori will take on the role of vice-captain.

“The Orlando Pirates Football Club can confirm the appointment of a new captain and vice-captain ahead of the start of the 2022-23 season,” the club wrote on its website on Wednesday.

“Following the departure of Happy Jehle, longtime captain Innocent Maela will take on the role of captain and goaltender Richard Ofori will take on the role of vice-captain. The captain is the leader of the men, a player who embodies the core values ​​of the club. He inspires those around him and conducts himself in an exemplary manner – on and off the field.”

“Maela not only embodies these values, but lives them. Throughout his football journey, which lasts more than a decade, the 29-year-old has been consistent; and never let the situation (good or bad) change his approach.”

Maela returned to the Buccaneers in 2017, having left the club in her youth. The Bafana guard Bafana went on to play for the Witbank Spurs and Thanda Royal Zulu before returning to the pirate ship.

“Maela has come full circle. Starting in 2012 at the club’s academy as a teenager, Inno, as he is affectionately known, embarked on a five-year journey away from the club where he began to improve, first at the Whitbank Spurs and then at Tanda Royal. Zulu,” the statement said.

“In 2017, when he was captain, the left back led the KZN team to promotion to the Premier League. The following season, Maela was recalled to the club, where he has since become a regular player of the club.”