Andries Mpondo – Why Pirates Should Have Kept Radiopane

Boitumelo Radiopane

Former Moroka Swallows striker Andries Mpondo has said that Orlando Pirates should have kept rising star, Boitumelo Radiopane after he was promoted from Bucs DStv Diski Challenge team at the start of the season.

The 20-year-old was loaned out to Cape Town Spurs to gain experience in the Motsepe Foundation Championship for the 2022/23 season, despite his impressive stint in the Pirates reserve team.

Radioman, as the young star is known in the football fraternity, had scored 24 goals in the Diski Challenge, and was voted the player of the season at the end of the 2021/2022 campaign.

Mpondo believes that if Pirates had kept hold of Radiopane this season, they would not have had to sign the likes of Bienvenu Eva Nga, Ndumiso Mabena and Souaibou Marou.

“I think the problem at Pirates this season is management, instead of them promoting a young Radiopane, they just opened the checkbook and went to sign Eva Nga and where is he now?

“Why did they sign Nga when there’s Radiopane? Now for the time for management to look at the young players from the Pirates MDC team. What is the purpose of the MDC if we don’t end up using them in the senior side?

“They should have not loaned Radiopane out to Spurs. I believe that Pirates should have twinned Erasmus and the young Radiopane up front together. Because that’s how the young ones gain experience when you mix them with the senior players.

“If Erasmus decides to retire, who’s going to fill the space? There is no one. They are going to have to go and buy another striker. But if Radiopane was there, he was going to learn something from Erasmus.  Radiopane is for the future, even for Bafana Bafana.”

The Pirates’ star has only played five games across all competitions this season for Spurs in the MFC after he was injured upon his arrival.  Radiopane scored his first goal during the Nedbank Cup qualifiers match against University of Pretoria in Cape Town recently and is showing signs of more goals to come as he regains his match fitness after injury.

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Orlando Pirates'  Boitumelo Radiopane
Orlando Pirates’ Boitumelo Radiopane challenged by Aphiwe Baliti of Bloemfontein Celtic during the DStv Diski Challenge clash. Photo – Sydney Mahlangu:BackpagePix