28 October, 2022
Orlando Pirates striker Kermit Erasmus has a pleasant recollection of his last league game against rivals Kaizer Chiefs and having recently returned to the Buccaneers, he has an opportunity to add to those fond memories.
The Buccaneers host their old foes at FNB Stadium this coming weekend in this season’s first instalment of the Soweto Derby, with several players from each camp looking to get a first-hand experience of the famous rivalry for the first time.
While the 33-year-old can be regarded as a new signing for the home side - having re-signed for the Club last month - his previous exposure to the iconic clash sets him apart from the rest of the recent transfer window’s new recruits.
Almost seven years to the day since turning in a stellar performance against Amakhosi, where he had a hand in all three Bucs goals leading to a 3-1 triumph, Erasmus is delighted to have another crack at one of Africa’s biggest football rivalries.
“The occasion is a special one, and it’s a privilege and honour to be a part of it again now that I’m back home,” he told Orlandopiratesfc.com in an exclusive interview.
“Obviously creating the three goals in a 3-1 win brings back fond memories for me personally.
“Everybody talks about the individual brilliance leading to the goals, but for me the whole team performance stands out along with the atmosphere. That’s the memory that people always remind me of when it comes to the Derby. Hopefully, we can bring our supporters a similar kind of joy on the weekend.”
Pirates head into Saturday’s clash with a bit of momentum in their favour after clinching back-to-back wins, the most recent of which came against Erasmus’ former club Mamelodi Sundowns - a game where he managed to find the net.
He has stressed the importance of staying consistent amid the upcoming stretch of games which not only includes the Derby, but also an important cup final.
“We gotta build on previous performances and just try to be consistent because with being consistent, there’s a lot of things you can achieve,” the player added.
Following in the footsteps of iconic names such as Jomo Sono and Jerry Sikhosana, who headline the list of players who got to don the famous skull and crossbones once more after a brief stint away, the rarity of the feat in modern football is not lost on Erasmus.
He describes his homecoming as a unique feeling, and it’s determined to bring joy to the faces of the Bucs faithful.
“I don’t think anyone has done what I’ve done in a long time,” Erasmus said.
“Especially coming back to a Club like Pirates. It definitely is a great feeling and I’m happy to be back bringing back happy days to the ‘Happy People’. That’s what’s important to me right now.”
The highly-anticipated Soweto Derby gets underway at 15:30 on Saturday.