- Moroka Swallows played their first professional match after a 3-year hiatus
- The Dube birds drew the match against TS Sporting in front of 3 000 supporters
- It was an emotional day for many in attendance, including Panyaza Lesufi
Young football followers may not be aware of this, but Moroka Swallows were arguably the biggest club in South African football outside of Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs.
Unfortunately, the club suffered a dramatic fall from grace as they plummeted down from the PSL and eventually into the amateur leagues.
After a 3-year hiatus, the Dube Birds played their first PSL match on Saturday.
The 1-1 draw against TS Sporting was witnessed by 3 000 passionate supporters at the Dobsonville Stadium.
One of the chief architects of Swallows’ resurrection, Panyaza Lesufi, was in attendance and revealed how much it meant.
Lesufi said, "From the first day Leon Prins (former owner) called me to say 'chief take this club I'm bankrupt' to what I saw is very emotional. I actually didn't want to come because I knew I would be this emotional."
TimesLIVE reported that the club has implemented an innovative ownership structure, with supporters being among the shareholders.
Lesufi added, "We want to change how football is run in this country. This team is owned by the supporters. If you check Barcelona and other teams in Europe that is the way to go."
Briefly.co.za understands that Swallows’ return to the PSL was on the back of a decision to purchase the status of Maccabi FC.
Lesufi and businessman David Mogashoa were the men responsible for raising R8 million in capital to make the deal materialise.
Lesufi said, "This thing has made me poor. I am now broke. That's why I had to get a businessperson who loves Swallows to take over."
The club needs to still acquire a clearance from Fifa, which is why the Maccabi name will be used in the interim.
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