The story of Orlando Pirates and midfielder Pule Maraisane has remained a mystery to many football followers, especially those in the Bucs corner.
The former SA U20 international confirmed his move to Pirates in July, but the club never announced him as one of their new signings.
Instead, Pirates confirmed deals with Joris Delle, Gabadinho Mhango, Austin Muwowo, Kabelo Dlamini, Bongani Sam, Tshegofatso Mabasa, Tebogo Tlolane, Fortune Makaringe and Siphesihle Ndlovu.
So why not Maraisane? This left the Bucs faithful with more questions than answers.
“People said I made up that story, but imagine why would I leave Turkey for SA and come sign for Pirates and lie?” said Maraisane, who was indeed playing in Turkey for Cerkezköy 1911.
The 24-year-old was speaking to FARPost.co.za about the whole matter.
“I don’t know where to start but Orlando Pirates and Cape Town City were interested in me, so I decided to go to Pirates,” said Maraisane.
“I had a meeting with the chairman (Irvin Khoza) and he asked me why I want to play for Pirates and I told him I had been in Europe for long – 8 years, so it’s better I come home. The next day I came to Pirates offices and signed. Everything went well – I went to training, stuff like that.”
But when Pirates went to pre-season camp in Rustenburg, in the North West, Maraisane said he was not part of the travelling squad.
“Then they went for camp and left me behind – it just started weird. My agent asked them for money then they said, ‘wait we need to look at Pule play before we pay’, but I was already signed.”
Maraisane has seemingly accepted that it wasn’t meant to be for him and the Buccaneers.
He said he’s awaiting his clearance from Pirates and has hinted that he may end up in Portugal.
“Then now I asked for my clearance, so I’m sitting at home without a team.”
“Before I came to South Africa there was a team in Portugal that wanted to sign me, but I wanted to come home and be close to my mom.
“I’m going back to Portugal in January. I wanted to leave now, but I have to wait for Pirates to issue my clearance,” concluded Maraisane.
Pirates administrator Floyd Mbele has, however, distanced the club from any links to Maraisane.
“I don’t know any player by that name. I don’t know who Pule Maraisane is,” insisted Mbele when we called him for the club’s side of the story.
Maraisane was spotted being involved in the club’s celebrations after their Carling Black Label Cup triumph over rivals Kaizer Chiefs at FNB Stadium in July.
Since then he was last seen training at Farouk Khan’s Stars of Africa Academy.
Amahle Siphungu and Shane Matsoyane