How Dauda's time at Pirates planted seeds for Ofori's own journey to Bucs

Richard Ofori may make his debut for Orlando Pirates against AmaZulu on Saturday.
Richard Ofori may make his debut for Orlando Pirates against AmaZulu on Saturday.
Image: Gerahrd Duraan/BackpagePix

Orlando Pirates’ new goalkeeper signing Richard Ofori has revealed that the seeds of playing for the Soweto giants were planted for him in a conversation with fellow Ghana international shot-stopper and ex-Buccaneer Fatau Dauda.

Ofori and Dauda‚ who now turns out for Legon Cities FC in Accra‚ have shared Ghana’s international glove assignments from the second half of the 2010s.

Ofori‚ who signed for Bucs on a three-year deal from Maritzburg United‚ said he asked Dauda about Pirates when the two were representing the Black Stars at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon.

That conversation came four months before Ofori joined Maritzburg from Ghana’s Wa All Stars in July 2017‚ and now‚ having impressed at United for three seasons‚ he has realised his “dream” of signing for Pirates.

“In 2017 when we went to Afcon we were speaking about the team [Pirates].

"And he was saying that they are a very good team to join‚ they are a good family‚" Ofori said of his chat with Dauda‚ who played for Pirates in the 2013-14 season.

“So we were talking about it and I got excited‚ because at that time too in 2017 I wasn’t playing here [in South Africa].

“I was feeling‚ ‘This team is a big team’‚ and the way Fatau was talking about it I felt like one day I could play for the team. So at the moment‚ to be here‚ I feel very excited.”

Ofori said Pirates are a big club.

“To sign for them‚ I feel very excited. It’s like a dream come true because every player wants to play for one of the biggest clubs in the world‚" the keeper said.

“So I feel happy‚ and I feel good and I feel at home. I’ve been playing [against] them for a while‚ so to finally be here I feel so good.”

Ofori had signed a year’s renewal in January to his contract with Maritzburg‚ until the end of the 2020-21 season‚ so United will have sold him to Pirates for a tidy profit.

The 26-year-old will compete with 37-year-old Wayne Sandilands for Bucs’ keeper’s jersey‚ and adds another star contribution to Pirates’ glittering array of signings that seems sure to make Josef Zinnbauer’s combination formidable in 2020-21 and beyond.

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