Long live Juluka!

Isaac Pheko - BG reporter
Wednesday, 14 August 2019
Long live Juluka!

Age defying, 35-year-old Zebras striker, Joel Mogorosi is currently one of the hottest free agents in the domestic football. This should not be the case given his advanced age but the Kanye native has several teams baying for his signature and as things stand, he is currently weighing his options. Gifted with physical strength above average football IQ and natural leadership skills, the former Township Rollers winger continues to rob father time on the pitch.

Mogorosi who runs by several monikers including Mahindra, Spitfire and Juluka continues to carry his own weight, both at club and national team level. This past season Juluka, now in the twilight of his career has endeared himself to both Rollers and Zebras fans, has kept his stock on the rise and put younger players to shame after finishing in the top 3 goal scorers of the BTC Premiership this past season. Despite being in his mid -30s, Juluka has proven to be a freak of nature in keeping his speed and goal scoring prowess, proving to be an asset to any club he chooses. In most cases, Juluka exhibits primal instincts and oozes confidence behind the ball, which has proven the hunger he still retains for the game.

The past few weeks have seen Juluka dominating the off season and transfer window deadlines as supporters and stakeholders continue to speculate on his immediate future in the coming 2020/21 season. It seems like football has been good to Juluka with a career spanning close to 20 years and the winger has enjoyed success and eluded controversy and career ending injuries that has marred the careers of some of his contemporaries. Having started a semi-professional career at the then BMC in the early 2000s, Mogorosi has travelled the world including Cyprus before coming back to Township Rollers and later Mochudi Centre Cheifs. Through all his travels and adventure Mogorosi remained a top player and rarely lost his form where ever he went.

It was not long before South Africa PSL side Bloemfontein Celtics came knocking and secured Mogorosi’s signature. A two-year consistent spell at Celtics saw Juluka’s popularity and myth grow on both sides of the border. After the PSL spell Magosi triumphantly returned to Botswana where he would help in the rebuilding of Township Rollers into a local Juggernaut. What is even more amazing about Juluka, who quickly became a football brand in his own right, is that he juggled club football with international success at the Zebras. Hardly articulate, Juluka usually puts his point across and inspires young players during big matches.  Perhaps one of Juluka’s lowest points was failing to compete at the 2012 Afcon finals when the team made their maiden appearance at the African showpiece.

This coming season, Juluka will probably be authoring the final few chapters of his stellar football career. As things stand, the player is said to be at a stalemate with his beloved Rollers who are reported to be offering less money for his services. Speculation is that other local teams have expressed interest in Juluka including Security Systems and Extension Gunners. In an interview this week, the Botswana football living legend said there are currently five league clubs after his services.
“Don’t get me wrong, I am not after money.

There is no way I can make money from football at this age. I am aware that the end is near,” he said.Despite his humble demeanour, Juluka commands an illustrious career that would make a compelling biography. Having played for the national team since 2005, Juluka said he has over 100 caps for Botswana and has lost count along the way. I have always been part of the national team and I am definitely in the top five of the most capped players in the national team. Quizzed on how many trophies (league and cups) throughout his career, Juluka said he has lost count of this too.

“I have won just about every trophy in the country. The only one I have not won is the newly introduced Orange FA Cup.” The player who is definitely not shy when speaking about his achievement said part of his success is that he never missed training. I was always serious about training and stayed passionate and hungry when it came to football. Mogorosi credits people like Daniel ‘Chico’ Nare and Patrick Sibanda as inspiration for his long career. These are the people I started out with when I played for Maletamotse.

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