Kaizer Chiefs have had a rocky start to the season and Mduduzi Shabalala has struggled to exert himself. He’s still one of the finest teenage talents in the country, though, and will enjoy a long rivalry with Orlando Pirates star Relebohile Mofokeng.
KAIZER CHIEFS FANS ADORE MDU SHABALALA
Of course “Mdu or die” shouldn’t be written off after his club’s poor start to the season. It’s a heavy burden wearing the famous black & gold, but 19-year-old Mduduzi Shabalala seems at ease with the pressure. Already a first-team regular, he’s bound to become a key player at club and international level for years to come. Initially, a wide attacker Mdu now enjoys occupying the “number 10” role but is equally comfortable drifting into the channels and carrying the ball over long distances. It’s perhaps not surprising that a player of his tender years has been taken out of the starting XI in recent matches, most recently against AmaZulu, but he’ll be back.
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MDU SET FOR A RIVALRY WITH ORLANDO PIRATES SENSATION MOFOKENG
Formerly known as Relebohile Ratomo, the Orlando Pirates playmaker Relebohile Mofokeng’s rise to fame has been sudden. After a cameo in their opening-day defeat to Stellenbosch, the 18-year-old has been thrust into the starting lineup in the Sea Robbers’ last four domestic matches across all competitions. He dazzled in a 4-2 win over Royal AM and their 5-0 rout of Sekhukhune and also provided a sensational assist against Chipa. It’s clear that coach Jose Riveiro already trusts him in the big games. That’s a huge compliment.
If all goes according to plan, young Mdu Shabala and Relebohile Mofokeng will enjoy a rich and long rivalry in Soweto Derby clashes. Who knows, they might also partner up for Bafana Bafana before long. This can only be a good thing for South African football as a whole.
Meanwhile, hit up James Freemantle for more insights, analysis and love for the beautiful game of football.