Orlando Pirates star Musa Nyatama wants respect for players over 30
Posted: 27 July 2018 Time: 16:00
Orlando Pirates midfielder Musa Nyatama has bemoaned the negative perception South African supporters have of players over the age of 30.
The 30-year-old has become a massive hit at The Buccaneers since his arrival from Bloemfontein Celtic last year.
Nyatama, having made his PSL debut nearly 10 years ago, was by no means considered one of the club’s marquee signings at the start of last season, but surprised many with his classy performances under the tutelage of Milutin Sredojevic and Rhulani Mokwena.
The former Mamelodi Sundowns attacker in fact went on to be nominated for the Players’ Player and Midfielder of the Season prizes at the annual PSL awards. And despite missing out on those accolades, he pulled off a clean sweep at Pirates' awards evening last week.
Nyatama could not help but continuously mention “for a player of my age”, as he reflected on his success, and eventually took some time to explain why his age was so significant.
“It’s very difficult when you get to 30, 31, 32, 33, it becomes very difficult in South Africa [because] people feel like you’re finished,” bemoaned Nyatama.
“Of which most of the players, especially overseas, I believe that’s where they are at the peaks of their careers.”
Nyatama further urged Mzansi football lovers to stop writing off players on the wrong side of 30, as their best years could yet be ahead of them.
“I think it is time to change the mentality of our South African supporters to say that from age 30 upwards, that’s where you get to play your best football,” he concluded.
Luvuyo Memela was another example of a player written off at his age, when he too mounted a resurgence at Bucs last season as a 30-year-old.