The Soweto derby continues to unleash new characters in the form of popular supporters, with the latest being Orlando Pirates’ Mandla “Mgijimi” Sindane and Kaizer Chiefs’ Colraine “Colly” Moatshe.
The pair say they are not out to claim the “number one supporter” tag, but rather to encourage other fans to go to stadiums.
Over the years, there have been interesting characters who became even more famous than the players, just for passionately showing their affection for their teams.
Colly says he does it for the love of the game.
“I am not competing with anyone. It’s not about competing, but about doing something different that I know will uplift the team spirit.”
Colly came to prominence after he trended on social media in 2017 when a video clip of him warming up with Chiefs players went viral. It was before a game against Highlands Park at Makhulong Stadium in Tembisa on Gauteng’s East Rand.
Pirates and Chiefs have enjoyed some diehard supporters, from the late Mzion Mofokeng and Samuel “Mguyo” Temane, to the emergence of Mama Joy Chauke and Saddam Maake, and more recently Mgijimi and Colly.
SUPERFIT 12th MAN Colly Moatshe warms up during an Amakhosi match. Picture: Lefty Shivambu / gallo images
The number of fans going to the stadium is not the same as before, but dyed in the wool fans continue to put aside their time and money to support their teams.
“We spend our hard-earned cash and, when the team is not doing well, we do think of all the money we spend travelling and sleeping in hotels, but we love our team,” said Mgijimi.
He says his love for the Buccaneers has taken him to many stadiums in South Africa and to more across the continent.
“The love of football and for Pirates is what keeps me going to the stadium. I know a lot of stadiums in South Africa and Africa because of Pirates.
“I started the Mgijimi character to encourage fans to go to the stadiums. I am calling on other fans to go and fill up FNB Stadium [for Saturday’s Soweto derby].”
The two superfans hope that more supporters will converge at The Calabash to continue with the spirit of the derby and support their teams on match days.
“I expect more unique fans to come in their numbers to support the derby, as we know it’s one of the biggest derbies in Africa,” Colly said.
“People will be coming with unique hairstyles and unique outfits, which is what the derby is all about. I encourage fans to support their teams even when things are not going well.”