Like father like son…’Fire’ and ‘Mgijimi’


Baroka winger Thamsanqa Masiya has joined a list of second generation footballers who have followed in their father’s footsteps in playing professional football.

Masiya is the son to Mamelodi Sundowns legend Joel ‘Fire’ Masilela, but doesn’t carry his father’s surname for personal reasons.

His career began at the Mamelodi Sundowns Academy at the age of 14 and he signed a professional contract at 18 though he couldn’t manage to break into the first team but played for their Multichoice Diski Challenge team.

The 23-year-old joined ‘Bakgaga’ from GladAfrica Championship side Swallows FC during the January transfer window period and Just like his father, he is a right winger who loves taking defenders on.

Fire Masilela was a speedy winger.

“My father talks about his games most of the time if we are not talking about my games so we keep on referring to his games what he was doing and what I should do to become a better player in that position because he played there so he probably knows better,” said Masiya as he reflects to FARPost on his relationship with his father.

“He tells me that no matter what just build your own legacy do what you have to do forget about me and just continue to work on your game trying to improve and take one game at a time”, said the man nicknamed ‘Mgijimi’ because of his speed.

The former U17 and U20 SA international also reveals that his father has not gotten over the now infamous 1998 Rothmans Cup final against Kaizer Chiefs where he was robbed off a legitimate goal that would have handed Downs the trophy.

Downs went on to lose on penalties.

“I think it was the Rothmans Cup against Chiefs where he scored a goal and they ruled it offside. Even today he is still crying about it,” said Masiya, who also had a stint at struggling second tier side Mbombela United.

Thami with his father, Joel.

Some of the current footballers who have followed in their father’s footsteps in South Africa include;

Lebohang Maboe (Mamelodi Sundowns)

His father Sidwell Maboe played for Bloemfontein Celtic and Orlando Pirates.

Thato Mohlamme (JDR Stars)

He’s kept his privacy, because he uses his mother’s surname. But he’s the son of Benedict Vilakazi, who played for Pirates during his heyday

Khanyisa and Khanyisile Mayo (Real Kings and University of Pretoria respectively)

The duo’s father is Patrick Mayo, the former Kaizer Chiefs striker. Like their father, Khanyisa is a forward and the same goes for Khanyisile, who’s more comfortable on the left wing. Khanyisile is on loan at AmaTuks from SuperSport United.

Bradley Grobler (SuperSport United)

Bradley’s father Les was a prolific striker in the colours of Moroka Swallows.

By Ofhani Munyai

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