gilbert leaves pirates

IT WAS a matter of out with the old at Orlando Pirates' training session yesterday, as coach Ruud Krol announced the departure of veteran striker Gilbert Mushangazhike from the Sea Robbers.

IT WAS a matter of out with the old at Orlando Pirates' training session yesterday, as coach Ruud Krol announced the departure of veteran striker Gilbert Mushangazhike from the Sea Robbers.

Krol told reporters that the Zimbabwean had signed for PSL newcomers Mpumalanga Black Aces, barely a day after Lebohang Mokoena left Pirates for Mamelodi Sundowns.

However, in rebuilding Pirates, Krol's choice of former University of Pretoria player Phenyo Mongala seems to be an inspired one, even at this early stage of the season.

Mongala struck the right chord with the Bucs faithful when he scored a wonder goal against Manchester City in the Vodacom Challenge on July 18.

The player has interpreted this exceptional debut as the start of good things for Pirates.

"It's been a big challenge for me to adjust to the Premier Soccer League, coming as I do from the National First Division.

"I have already played and scored against a world-class team from Europe and I could not be happier.

"Playing for Pirates presents a challenge for me which I could not help but take in my stride," Mongala said.

As impressive as his performance was, Mongala was not the only Buccaneer to shine in the last couple of pre-season matches. Goalkeeper Moeneeb Josephs was also in outstanding form, saving three penalty kicks against Chiefs. Josephs said Pirates were looking beyond Saturday's tournament to the MTN8 that kicks off with Pirates taking on Ajax Cape Town, a team that has always troubled them.

But then there is also the small matter of the Saturday derby clash in the Telkom Charity Cup.

"I am looking forward to the next derby date. Obviously our fans have had to suffer at the hands of the Chiefs fans over the last couple of days and we are all looking forward to changing that.

"Since they voted us in, we have got to feel what they feel and go beyond making it a great contest for them," Josephs said.

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