Isaac Chansa Reveals Greatest-Ever PSL Midfield Partnership: ‘Their Combination was Deadly’

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The Zambia national team player and Orlando Pirates icon believes that two former South African national team players merit inclusion among the top midfield duos.


What Transpired?


Isaac Chansa, the esteemed former midfielder of Orlando Pirates, recently lauded the talents of Andile Jali and Oupa Manyisa, affirming them as his top midfield pairing in South Africa’s football history.


The dynamic duo, in tandem with Chansa under the guidance of Dutch coach Ruud Krol over a decade ago at Orlando Pirates, crafted a formidable partnership characterized by mutual understanding and synergy on the pitch.


When questioned about Jali and Manyisa’s place in the pantheon of South African football’s legendary midfield partnerships, Chansa unequivocally endorsed them as his premier choice. Their exceptional chemistry and on-field prowess evidently left an indelible mark on Chansa, solidifying their status as the pinnacle of midfield excellence in his esteemed perspective.



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The sentiments expressed:


“To be honest, I enjoyed playing alongside Onyekachi (Okonkwo), made me play very simple. Playing next to him was very easy, he was a quality,” Chansa told GOAL.


“But there were two young quality and capable players in our team, that’s Andile (Jali) and Oupa (Manyisa), those two, they were the best.


“That’s why even now, Manyisa and Jali remain my all-time favourite pair midfielders in South Africa. They made things happen in Pirates of our time.


“If I were to choose, I would choose them anytime. Their combination was deadly, we won and played very well because of how they played, they remain my best.”




The Broader Context:


The collaborative efforts of these former Orlando Pirates players played a pivotal role in the team’s remarkable achievements under coach Ruud Krol, securing an unprecedented double-treble from 2010 to 2012.


Following their tenure at Orlando Pirates, Jali and Manyisa continued their partnership at Mamelodi Sundowns. However, their synergy failed to replicate the success they experienced at Pirates.


Moreover, their camaraderie extended beyond club boundaries, as they shared the national team dressing room during the zenith of their footballing careers.



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What Lies Ahead?


The midfielder, originally from Matatiele, finds himself without a club since his departure from Moroka Swallows in February of this year.


Meanwhile, Manyisa, hailing from Mohlakeng, remains without a team after facing challenges in securing a new club following his exit from the NFD side, Platinum City Rovers, in January.


The future unfolds with uncertainty as it remains to be seen whether these players will secure new teams for the upcoming season, especially considering their ongoing commitment to the sport as they have yet to retire.





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