Oupa Manyisa exposes Owen Da Gama for refusing to let him train at Orlando Pirates

Former Orlando Pirates star, Oupa Manyisa, recently revealed his initial struggles upon joining the Soweto giants.

In a candid interview on the “Izinja zeGame” podcast hosted by Josta Dladla, Manyisa recounted how he was turned away from his first training session by then-coach Owen da Gama.

“When I got to Pirates, on the first day for my first training session, Coach Owen da Gama said ‘my guy I don’t know you, who signed you? You can’t train,'” Manyisa shared. 

Unaware of Manyisa’s recruitment by the club, da Gama sent him back to the Africa Sport Youth Development Academy.

After a call to the academy’s co-founder, Harold Legodi, the misunderstanding was cleared, and Manyisa returned to training the next day. 

“The following day when I got to training he said ‘my boy you’re back’ even today he tells people that he signed me when I was young,” Manyisa humorously added.

Despite overcoming the initial hurdle, Manyisa faced further challenges. He was booed by fans and relegated to the bench after just two appearances in his first season.

He recalled the frustration but credited senior players like Teko Modise and Joseph Makhanya for their support and encouragement.

“On the way (to training), he encouraged me not to worry and that my time is coming,” Manyisa said of Modise. 

With their guidance, Manyisa persevered, eventually breaking into the first team under Dutch coach Ruud Krol in his second season.

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