Former Orlando Pirates dribbling wizard Thabo Rakhale has opened up on his “sad exit” from Orlando Pirates, saying he first about his exit in the media.
A fan favorite at the time, Rakhale explained how his Chippa loan move happened after spending more than three years at Pirates.
The 32-year-old said he was loaned out without him knowing about it and after he had just felt he had a breakthrough under then coach Milutin Sredojević.
“It was one of those things, when coaches come and go, a new coach can say you are not into his plans. Things started to go sideways for me, I started being benched.
“The coaches were Micho and Rulani Mokwena that time,” Rakhale told Andile Ncube on Sports Night Amplified.
“I wouldn’t say they didn’t like how I play, but maybe for their system I wasn’t suitable for it.
“Because when they came the first thing they did was to change the formation of the team, and the structure of how we should play. But honestly speaking, I would say I never got a chance to adjust to their system they wanted us to play.
“I was on the bench, I was on the stands. Before the December break, they started to play me and played well. The day after our last game I got an SMS from coach Micho, who said ‘we can see you’re becoming the player we want you to be.
“You did very well for the team, you did well for yourself’. I was so happy and think now I need to work more to be getting the game-time I should be getting come the second round of the league.
“[But] funny enough one morning I wake up and I saw on Soccer Laduma that I am being sent to Chippa United. Two, three days after those compliments I see on the internet that I’m leaving the team. No one [from Pirates] ever spoke to me about anything.
“I had to call Mr. Flyod Mbhele because from the even from office nobody called me. Firstly I called my agent, and asked him ‘can you please check with me for the team what’s happening regarding this’. He said, ‘let me get back to you’.
“Then he called me back and said this is what’s happening. He didn’t know either. Then I called Mr. Floyd Mbhele and he was like ‘yeah, this is what’s happening’.
“A few hours later, I got a call from coach Tebogo Moloi, who was the head coach at Chippa United, and he told me ‘I’ve been waiting for you this side’. Deep down I had something telling me this is not happening now. I think it’s something that has been happening, the talks.
“Because when I saw it, it was a swap deal, the two players were Diamond Thopola and Phetso Maphanga, they were coming to Pirates. Also in the article, it was stated that it’s a swap deal.
“At first I took it lightly, I thought the journalists were looking for something to write about. Even when my agent said this is true. I never took it seriously until I got a call from coach Tebogo Moloi.
“But again because I wanted to play football, I wasn’t playing much at Pirates by that time. I knew that going to Chippa I’ll be getting more game-time.
“It’s very sad how I left Pirates. I always tell people this. Maybe I could have left in a decent matter, not like this.”
Rakhale, 32, has been out of professional football for some time after leaving Sekhukhune United in February last year.
The former TTM attacker has been playing ekasi football to keep himself fit but also insisted he’s not yet ready to hang up his boots and hopes for another chance in the Premier Soccer League.