Pienaar targets Wits title defense

The former Everton stalwart has joined Wits on a one-year contract with an option to extend by a further year, snubbing possible moves to the likes of Orlando Pirates, Kaizer Chiefs and Mamelodi Sundowns.

Having left South Africa more than 16 years ago, ‘Schillo’ has only managed to win two league titles since – both of which came in the Dutch Eredivisie with Ajax Amsterdam – and he is itching to get his hands on a third.

The 35-year-old believes his best chance of doing so is with The Clever Boys, while he also hopes to pass on some of his experience gained through his time in Holland, Germany and England.

“My goal is to win the league – that’s why I joined the club,” stated Pienaar. “It’s going to be tough but we’re going to fight every game to make sure we win as many as we can, and fight for every trophy available.

“My main goal though is I want to win the league and just enjoy playing football back home, while also trying to help the young players coming through.”

With coach Gavin Hunt not lacking in strength in a central midfield department which includes Thabang Monare, Xola Mlambo, Ben Motshwari, Phumlani Ntshangase and recently signed Kobamelo Kodisang, Pienaar welcomes the competition as he also looks to guide the less experienced players.

“It’s an interesting process because there’s a lot of talent – like ‘KK' [Kodisang], who, when I saw for the first time in training, I thought ‘wow’! That’s something that will push me as a player as well,” added Pienaar.

“I need to be on my toes so that I can push him and make sure he goes in the right direction, so it’s good to have all the talent and young, gifted players in the squad.

"It’s also good for the coach because I think he’s going to have a lot of headaches this season.”

Pienaar also amassed 62 international caps for Bafana Bafana, before announcing his retirement in 2013.