Returning Orlando Pirates striker Ndumiso Mabena has reassured the supporters that he still has what it takes to deliver on the pitch despite his advanced age.

Soccer Laduma reported that Pirates had offered Mabena, who has been training with the team since September, a contract and his announcement was imminent.

The Buccaneers eventually confirmed on Wednesday that they have re-signed the 35-year old on a one-and-half season deal.

Mabena had an acrimonious exit from his previous club Royal AM but after he obtained his clearance, he was invited to train with the Sea Robbers.

Since the news broke that the Groblersdal-born striker was training with the Soweto giants and after his announcement, there has been eyebrows raised about his age.

However, the well travelled striker, who had spells at defunct Platinum Stars and Bloemfontein Celtic, before they were bought by AM, says he has been taking good care of his body and for him age is just a number.

“For me it’s not about age, for me it’s about the body, I like saying, ‘If you can walk, then you can run, then if you can run, that means you can still walk’,” Mabena said in an interview on Metro FM Sports.

“So it’s how you’re taking care of your body and it’s how your body is functioning to what you’re doing, on and off the field.

“So I think that’s the most important thing, if you can still play football, you can bring your experience also, you can still keep the ball, you can still run. Ja, I don’t think age is a problem, it’s just a number,” he said.

Mabena, who also had a five-year stint at Pirates between 2009 and 2014 went on to reveal that he can even keep up with the speedy and younger players at training.

“With how I’m training my body keeps up with even the younger ones, so that’s why some of them like me a lot, they still want to learn from me, taking all the things I’ve doing for the past years,” he said.

“Wanting to know why did I keep up until so far, so for me I’m still good. I’m still gonna go for years,” he added.

Mabena would be encouraged that one of his long-time rival in the goal-scoring charts, Bradley Grobler, is still banging in the goals, as he is currently the joint-top leading goal scorer in the DStv Premiership with six goals, turning 35 in January 2023.

Categories: Sport


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