1,596 Views

Patrick Maswanganyi, seen here in a promotional pic released by the club when he was signed, scored their winner in their preseason friendly against Maccabi Tel Aviv.”/>

In the face of calls for a boycott by the South African Communist Party and the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, Orlando Pirates proceeded with their controversial preseason friendly against Maccabi Tel Aviv in Spain. The Soweto giants emerged victorious with a 1-0 win over the Israeli team on Thursday.

Despite the urging to abandon the game, Orlando Pirates explained that the match was organized by a FIFA match agent. While expressing sympathy for the Palestinian people’s plight, the club emphasized that there was no official boycott against Israel, and therefore, they would adhere to the rules and honor the fixture.

Details about the match remain scarce, as no venue was disclosed. However, the website Flashscore.co.za unveiled the starting lineup for Orlando Pirates, revealing that new signing Patrick Maswanganyi from SuperSport United scored the decisive goal in the 40th minute. The starting lineup consisted of Sipho Chaine, Paseka Mako, Tapelo Xoki, Nkosinathi Sibisi, Thabiso Monyane, Makhehlene Makhaula, Kabelo Dlamini, Thabang Monare, Thembinkosi Lorch, Evidence Makgopa, and Maswanganyi.

Given the controversy surrounding the game, Orlando Pirates seemed reluctant to publicize the result. No details were posted on the club’s social media platforms or website at the time of publishing on Friday morning.

Orlando Pirates’ preseason camp in Spain will continue with upcoming matches against Independiente da Valle from Ecuador on Saturday and La Liga promoted team Las Palmas on Wednesday.

The decision by Orlando Pirates to proceed with the pre-season friendly against Maccabi Tel Aviv, despite the boycott calls, highlights the club’s commitment to honoring their scheduled fixtures and following FIFA regulations. The controversy surrounding the game reflects the ongoing tensions and debates regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. While the result is notable, the club’s decision to refrain from publicizing the details suggests their sensitivity to the larger context of the match.

Orlando Pirates will continue their pre-season preparations in Spain, engaging in further matches as they build towards the upcoming season.