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Innocent Maela Named New Orlando Pirates Captain

Innocent Maela has been named th e new captain of Orlando Pirates following the departure of Happy Jele, who is on his way to Royal AM.

The announcement was made by the club on Wednesday afternoon, just five day after the Premier Soccer League giants unveiled their new jersey.

Ghana international Richard Ofori, who was instrumental in qualifying the Buccaneers to last season’s African Confederation Cup final, was handed the onus to deputize the new captain.

“Orlando Pirates FC can confirm the appointment of a new captain and vice-captain ahead of the start of the 2022-23 season,” the Bucs stated.

“A captain is a leader of men, a player who embodies the core values of the club. He inspires those around him and leads in an exemplary manner, on and off the field.

“Maela not only personifies these values, but he lives them. Throughout his football journey, which spans a 10-year period, the 29-year-old has been consistent and never allowing a situation [good or bad] to change his approach.

“Maela has come full circle. Starting as a youngster in the club’s academy ranks in 2012, ‘Inno’, as he is affectionately known, went on a five-year journey away from the club where he went on to cut his teeth, first at Witbank Spurs and then Thanda Royal Zulu.

“In 2017, when he was captain, the left-back led [Thanda] to promotion to the Premiership. The following season, Maela was recalled to the club, where he has since become a regular feature at Pirates.”

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