Happy Jele to make a stunning Pirates comeback?

Jele parted company with Pirates last year, bringing an end to a great career that spanned 16 years and includes over 400 games since 2006.

A statement at that time indicated that Jele was invited to carefully consider a non-playing role after extensive conversations, but the former captain afterwards insisted that he wanted to continue playing “beyond the 2021/2022 season”.

However, Pirates ultimately determined that they couldn’t agree to a continuous participation in the playing team, and bad farewell to Jele.

Yet Goal.com now reports “on good authority” that Jele is once again speaking with Orlando Pirates regarding a non-playing post at the club.

“Talks between the two parties are still in the early stages,” the source told GOAL. “He is seriously considering hanging up his boots and serving the club that he loves in any capacity. It is unclear at this stage what kind of position he will be offered by the club. But everything will be obvious as conversations progress.”

Jele had won two league titles, two Nedbank Cups, a Telkom Knockout competition and been part of three MTN8 title victories, but couldn’t settle at a new club after parting ways with Pirates.

It will now be very intriguing to see whether a return to Pirates could eventuate in some manner or another.

Our center defender and Club Captain, who has reached the end of his contract, will be departing the club. This marks the end of Happy Jele’s tremendous career with us.

Orlando Pirates Football Club can announce that Happy Jele met with the Chairman of the Club at the end of the 2021/22 season to discuss his future. During these talks, which extended a three-week period, the Club discussed several work choices accessible to the long-term serving defender in a non-playing position.

Subsequent to this meeting, the 35-year-old was granted time to go home and think about it.

Ordinarily, players are released at the conclusion of the players’ contract but in Happy’s case, as he has a particular position in the Club, having served the Club so professionally over the past 16 years, the Chairman had explicitly sought the player for his thoughts.

A follow-up meeting was held two weeks later where Happy indicated his intensions to continue playing football beyond the 2021/2022 season, an option that regrettably is not available.

Everyone at Orlando Pirates Football Club would like to express the immense thanks to Happy Jele and wish him the very best of luck for the future.

Happy arrived from the amateur club Walter Stars in 2006 as a lanky and unassuming 19 year old. Today, he departs a place he has called home for the previous 16 years as a legend, captain, husband and father.

In those 16 years, he won 8 titles, made over 400 appearances and scored 18 goals.

Happy is a unique individual who has responded to every request the club has made of him over the years; therefore, he has a future at the club beyond his playing career. Everyone at the Orlando Pirates Football Club would like to extend their deepest appreciation to Happy Jele and wish him the best of luck in the future.


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