Pirates legend highlights what went wrong with Saleng this season

Former Orlando Pirates player, Shakes Gwabeni, has given his opinion on why Monnapule Saleng is struggling this season.

Saleng was named the Players’ Player of the Season last year after helping the team finish second in the DStv Premiership.

ALSO READ: Ex-Orlando Pirates striker pleads poverty, spent night in holding cells – report

He scored 15 goals in 30 games across all competitions and made 11 assists. However, this season, the 25-year-old winger has not been in top form, having only scored two goals and made one assist in 15 appearances across all competitions.

Pirates legend speaks on Saleng’s struggles this season

Some fans are suggesting that Saleng might have been a one-season wonder who only performed well last season.

Gwabeni believes that a few factors have contributed to Saleng’s struggles this season.

ALSO READ: Out-of-favour Saleng impresses Pirates coach Riveiro

“Well it could be a few things, for example, you can see that the team has changed the way they play,” Gwabeni told KickOff.

“The new style of playing seems to be more suited for the attacking midfielder behind the striker and it doesn’t suit wingers like Saleng, So I think that is one of the reasons It looks like he is struggling to replicate his form,” said the Pirates legend.

ALSO READ: PSL Awards: Sundowns star beats Saleng to Footballer of the Season award

ALSO READ: Saleng’s incredible numbers for Orlando Pirates

“It could also be that it is his second season. The second season is always tougher than the first. When you arrive on the scene defending doesn’t really stick to you or know how to deal with you but after his performances last season, you would expect that teams now plan ahead for him and mark him a bit tighter.

Pirates have the likes of Vincent Pule, Deon Hotto, and Lesedi Kapinga on the wing which makes life difficult for Saleng.

“It’s a tough situation for him and I think also for the coach. So many new players have arrived, Kimvuidi, Maswanganyi, Kapinga and so forth. With these types of players, the coach may be forced to change the way of playing you know,” he said.

ALSO READ: Saleng or Mokoena? Who deserved PSL Footballer of the Season?

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE ARTICLES BY ELIOT MAHLASE