DStv Premiership Preview: Swallows

2 March, 2023

The Original Derby kicks off the weekend’s action as Orlando Pirates take a short trip to Dobsonville Stadium for their DStv Premiership fixture against Soweto rivals Swallows on Friday night.

It’s the second of back-to-back derbies for the Buccaneers as the recently-rekindled rivalry between two of the oldest clubs in South Africa returns for another exciting instalment.

Form Guide

They will be looking to avoid consecutive defeats to Soweto opposition after losing 1-0 to Kaizer Chiefs at FNB Stadium last weekend in a game they finished with ten men on the park.

The loss was their second such result in the last five league fixtures, where they have amassed nine points to get up to third place in the standings.

With less than 10 games remaining in the campaign, Pirates will aim to strengthen their challenge for a coveted CAF Champions League spot, but will first have to go past a side buoyed by a favourable outcome in their last outing.

Swallows have had a mixed bag of results in recent weeks, and will be in search of some consistency after beating Chippa United 2-1 at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium last Sunday.

Despite the victory, they remain in a tight scramble to avoid relegation and will be eager to claim the Buccaneers scalp to add to their two wins claimed in their last five games, where they have also lost two and drawn one.

Team News

Pirates Head Coach José Riveiro returns to the dugout, having served out his two-match suspension.

However, there are two members of the playing personnel who will miss out of the action in captain Innocent Maela and fellow defender Nkosinathi Sibisi.

The skipper is suspended for two games after picking up a red card at FNB Stadium, while his teammate will sit out just one match for accumulating a total of four yellow cards throughout the season.

It’s a similar scenario for Swallows with on-loan Bucs defender Bongani Sam not eligible for selection after being red carded when his side finished with nine men against Cape Town City. Keegan Allan - the other player to receive his marching orders during the fixture - is also ruled out of Friday’s game. 

Key Players

Miguel Timm (Orlando Pirates): The midfield workhorse is coming off yet another stellar performance and will again be key against a determined Swallows outfit. Timm has impressed with his ability to stifle attacks through the middle, as well pulling the strings in the opposition half through clever passes. 

Kagiso Malinga (Swallows): After struggling for game time early in the season, the 28-year-old has made himself an indispensable member of the starting XI through his recent goal-scoring feats. Malinga bagged a brace in the win against Chippa, adding to his late goal in the victory over Richards Bay to make it three goals in his last three appearances.


The Buccaneers have managed to assert some dominance in this fixture since their oldest rivals returned to the top flight ahead of the 2020/21 season. They have done so by emerging victorious in the two league games that produced a winner during this period, with the remaining three ending in a stalemate.

The most recent of these wins came at Orlando Stadium when they edged the Birds 1-0 in their season opener.

Swallows, on the other hand, will be in search of their first victory over Pirates since August 2014, months before being relegated to the second tier of South African football.

Overall, the two sides have met 27 times since the 2004/5 campaign, with the Buccaneers winning 10 and losing on six occasions, and four of their victories have been achieved away from home.

How to Watch Orlando Pirates vs Swallows 

Kick-off is at 19:30 and the game will be televised live on SuperSport PSL. Live updates will also be provided across all Orlando Pirates social media platforms as well as the official Orlando Pirates app.