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UJ Men’s Football Team crowned 2024 Pirates Cup champions

The University of Johannesburg’s (UJ) Men’s Junior Football Team emerged victorious in the 2024 Pirates Cup, securing the R80,000 prize money and the coveted championship title. This impressive feat was achieved at the Wits Marks Park Sportsgrounds on Sunday, March 31st, 2024.

The UJ team, boasting a blend of young and experienced players, showcased remarkable consistency throughout the tournament. They remained undefeated in 11 matches, winning five out of seven games in the round-robin stage on March 29th and conquering their remaining matches during the knockout stages on March 31st.

Dominating the Round Robin

Nicknamed the “Orange Army,” the UJ team displayed their prowess on Good Friday (March 29th) by securing two victories against Celta Vigo (1-0) and Total Football Excellence (5-0). They also held their ground in a goalless draw against Trap n Pass. This impressive performance landed them at the top of the log standings with seven points and a significant goal difference advantage (six goals ahead of second place).

UJ in the Pirates Cup 2024 at Wits Marks Park Sportsgrounds

While the UJ Women’s team could not advance beyond the round-robin stage, their performance displayed strong potential. They played three matches on March 28th, drawing against the University of Pretoria and JVW FC (both goalless) and securing a 1-1 draw against Wits University ladies.

UJ Men’s knockout phase

The UJ Men’s team continued their winning streak in the knockout stages. They triumphed over SuperSport United (4-3 on penalties after a goalless draw), The Citizens (1-0), and Emalahleni United (2-0) before achieving a thrilling 2-1 victory against Teltonika Amahle FC in the final.

While the UJ men’s team was crowned champions of the Pirates Cup, JVW FC emerged champions of the ladies’ tournament, defeating Mamelodi Sundowns Ladies FC in a penalty shootout.

In the men’s final, UJ came from a 1-0 chase to win 2-1 against Teltonika Amahle FC. Puleng Bapela scored an equalizer for UJ halfway through the second half of the match, and later completed his brace in regulation time to give UJ the championship status.

Shannon Macomo in Pirates Cup 2024

Individual Recognition

UJ’s goalkeeper, Lungelo Sithole, received well-deserved recognition for his outstanding performance throughout the tournament, securing the Golden Glove Prize.

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