Mahlonoko: Teenage midfielder bids farewell to Orlando Pirates

Augustine Mahlonoko is a free agent after confirming his departure from Orlando Pirates on Tuesday. 

Reports emerged on Monday that the 18-year-old had been handed his clearance by the club.

Mahlonoko spent this season on loan at ABC Motsepe League outfit Pele Pele FC after struggling for game time at the Sea Robbers. 

The Sebokeng-born midfielder took to social media to bid farewell to the Buccaneers. 

“Done with introduction. Ready for chapter 1. Thank you Pirates for great memories. Once and Always,” he wrote.     

In 2018, Mahlonoko became one of the youngest players in the history of the club to feature in a professional setup.

He made his professional debut against Highlands Park in August 2018, and at the time, Mahlonoko was just 16 years old.   

This was after a successful career with the Bucs MultiChoice Diski Challenge (MDC) team. 

Mahlonoko captained the MDC side and it was Micho Sredojevic and Rhulani Mokwena who felt the teenager was ready to make a name for himself in the senior team. 

However, things didn’t go according to plan as he was limited to three appearances before the technical team decided to go for more experienced campaigners. 

Mahlonoko is now eligible to sign with a club of his choice ahead of next season. 

Should he find a new club in the coming weeks, he will only be eligible to play at the start 2020-21 campaign as the PSL season is still suspended.  

At one stage, Mahlonoko was linked with a possible trial to an unnamed Spanish club but he couldn’t go due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Sea Robbers are yet to release an official statement regarding the departure of Mahlonoko or any player movements from within their camp.  

Nonetheless, they are expected to add a few new players for next season with both Thulani Hlatshwayo and Deon Hotto expected to complete their moves to Mayfair in the next few weeks. 

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