‘Our competition is ourselves’ – Mamelodi Sundowns star dismisses Orlando Pirates’ title credentials

The defender feels the Buccaneers are still not a match for the Brazilians

Mamelodi Sundowns defender Mosa Lebusa does not believe Orlando Pirates will be a challenge for them in the PSL next season despite pundits tipping them to compete with the Brazilians.

Pirates have struggled to compete with Sundowns in the PSL with Masandwana outclassing every other team to claim the last seven titles but there is a feeling that Pirates posses a strong squad to go for the league crown in 2024-25.

While he does not deny Pirates’ quality, Lebusa is of the opinion that the Sea Robbers still lack the mental strength needed to beat Rhulani Mokwena’s team.

‘I’m not sure they are on the same level as us in terms of the mental capacity’

“I mean, they have been saying that [Pirates challenging Sundowns] for quite some seasons, and here we are,” Lebusa told iDiski Times.

“But I feel they have a good team, and we just saw what happened now, but I’m not sure if they are on the same level as us in terms of the mental capacity of our desires, what we want to achieve. But we are ready for whatever they bring to us.

Orlando Pirates players celebrate a goal during a past match. Photo: Icon Sports
Orlando Pirates players celebrate a goal during a past match. Photo: Icon Sports

“But I think our competition is ourselves, you know, every season we work hard to be better than we were the previous season.”

Pirates have beaten Sundowns in cup games but the Brazilians still rule the PSL

Pirates have shown great quality in cup games, winning both the MTN8 and Nedbank Cup in each of the last two seasons, at the expense of Sundowns in 2023-24, but fallen short in the league.

However, Mokwena’s men remain the top dogs in the PSL where they seem to have no challengers.

Pirates finished second in each of the last two seasons with the margin of Sundowns’ league wins showing the big gulf in class that exists between both teams.

Sundowns accumulated 73 points last season, 23 ahead of Pirates, having beaten them by 16 the previous campaign and Jose Riveiro’s men have a lot of work to do to close in. 

Avatar photo
Joel Oliver

Joel Oliver is a seasoned multimedia sports journalist with a rich background in covering diverse football stories and events in South Africa and beyond.

His extensive coverage spans subjects touching on the PSL, with a focus on the Big Three (Orlando Pirates, Kaizer Chiefs & Mamelodi Sundowns), Bafana Bafana and Banyana Banyana.