How a grudge against a coach led to Mngonyama’s early release at Pirates

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Kwanda Mngonyama’s move to Orlando Pirates was unlikely to be a success as there were already tensions when he got there, Phakaaathi has learnt. 

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Mngonyama signed a two-year deal with Pirates from Maritzburg United at the beginning of last season, but was released earlier this month with a year still to run on his contract.

A source has revealed that when Mngonyama got to Pirates, he found that there is a coach he does not see eye-to-eye with from their days at Maritzburg United. 

The coach, who is known to Phakaaathi, is believed to be still holding a grudge against Mngonyama and a lot of other players who he ignored no matter how well they did at training. 

“He thought they could bury the hatchet and be professional because they were now at a big club. But that did not happen and they ended up having a big bust-up which almost ended badly,” said the source. 

“Kwashoda ozogadla kuqala (They almost came to blows). And it was clear from thereon that one of them (or both) would have to move away from Pirates for the club’s sake,” he added.

“He has had many run-ins with a number of other people, even his co-coach at Pirates last season. They fought often and at one point they had a standoff and had to be separated. 

“He is known for his dictatorial tendencies and he has made a lot of enemies in the game especially among coaches,” said the source. 

Pirates had co-coaches in Fadlu Davids and Mandla Ncikazi and they are both former Maritzburg coaches. Davids has since left the club with his contract ending on June 30.

Ncikazi is still with the club and has been made second assistant to new coach Jose Riviero. 

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