Nedbank Cup

Andile Jali of Mamelodi Sundowns challenges Thembinkosi Lorch of Orlando Pirates during the DStv Premiership match between Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates on the 02 January 2020 at Loftus Stadium , Pretoria/ Pic Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

Mamelodi Sundowns transfer rumours forcing Orlando Pirates Thembinkosi Lorch decision delay?

Orlando Pirates chairman Dr Irvin Khoza is reported to be now stalling on a decision regarding Thembinkosi Lorch’s transfer request from the club.

Nedbank Cup

Andile Jali of Mamelodi Sundowns challenges Thembinkosi Lorch of Orlando Pirates during the DStv Premiership match between Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates on the 02 January 2020 at Loftus Stadium , Pretoria/ Pic Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

Orlando Pirates chairman Dr Irvin Khoza is reported to be now stalling on a decision regarding Thembinkosi Lorch’s transfer request from the club.

The star midfielder Lorch has been the subject of transfer speculation from European clubs since his sterling displays for Pirates won him the PSL Player of the Year award at the end of the 2018/2019 season. At the end of that season, Lorch earned selection to Stuart Baxter’s Afcon squad.

Even though he surprisingly found himself on the peripheries of that squad, his goal against Egypt did prove to be a decisive piece of action, as it knocked the hosts out of the tournament, helping Bafana Bafana advance to the quarterfinals. That moment proved Lorch’s quality and he would’ve been hoping that Pirates would allow him to leave and join clubs in Europe who also had no doubt over his abilities.

Lorch’s move away from Pirates failed to materialize

Despite the increasing speculation upon his return from the Land of the Pyramids, that move proved to not be forthcoming for Lorch. The disappointment from the Pirates star man was well documented, with some even going as far as saying his decrease in output and performances the following season was a sheer consequence of the space he had found himself in.

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Earlier this year, it seemed like Lorch’s fortunes were about to change. More reports came out stating that amidst more European interest, Lorch put out another transfer request to Pirates. It was then believed in March this year that club boss Khoza had approved the request, giving the Bafana Bafana international his blessing to move abroad, if a club was willing to pay big for his services.

Now it appears there could be a change of heart from Pirates

Months later, and as the season edges closer to its conclusion, not much movement has been reported to have happened since. Sources speaking to The Citizen believe that it is Lorch threatening to break his promise by now edging towards a move to local rivals Mamelodi Sundowns that has made Khoza doubt releasing him from Pirates.

“Nothing has happened yet, Khoza has not told him whether he can start negotiating with other teams who are interested or not. I think he wants whoever wants his player to come to him, and not the other way around,” the source said

The source would go on to give reasons as to why European interest had seemed to slow down from that period where he was believed to have had his wish granted by the Pirates chairman.

“It wouldn’t make sense for them to make an offer when the player was injured, and they didn’t have full medical details on the condition. But now that he has recovered, they might come knocking soon,” 

Where will Lorch be playing his football next season?

Adding further fuel to the fire is Pirates archrivals Kaizer Chiefs also being rumoured to be interested in Lorch’s services. It would seem more likely that if Lorch does end up joining a local team, that it be Sundowns, however, as Pirates and Chiefs are known to have an “unwritten rule” that prevents them from doing direct business with each other.