Secrets of the Stars
Ten things you may not know about Black Leopards midfielder Phathutshedzo Nange.
Phathutshedzo Nange was born in Shanzha Village, Vhembe District in Limpopo, and is the first-born of two boys in his family. The 26-year-old is the son of former Dynamos and Black Leopards midfielder Tshilidzi Nange. Nange senior – now 47 – made his PSL debut during the 1998/99 season, playing five games as Dynamos was eventually relegated back to the First Division. 3 The Black Leopards midfielder is the cousin of newly-signed Polokwane City goalkeeper Bongani Manavhela, who was the captain of First Division club Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila FC last season. Manavhela previously played for Mbombela United and JDR. “Bongani is the son of my father’s sister and we have always been close since we were kids, attending the same primary school. It was only when he left to stay with his mom that he attended a different secondary school in the area,” says Nange. 4 Nange holds an N6 Electrical Engineering Diploma from Tshwane South College and completed his studies in 2014. Once financial resources allow, he plans to start a company back home that will empower the youth in his village which is largely disadvantaged. 5 Nange started his career at Shanzha Continental, then moved to Tshwane South College before proceeding to JDR from where he then joined Leopards. 6 In between all those moves, he had trials at University of Pretoria and Mpumalanga Black Aces. “At Aces I passed the trials, but my father refused to let me join them as I was still studying at Tshwane South College. At Tuks it was a public trial, and I arrived very tired after walking for two hours from my place. The trials started at 7am, but I was already tired when I got there. I was invited again, but JDR wanted more money than what Tuks was offering,” he explains. 7 As a primary school pupil, Nange also played volleyball and represented the Limpopo Province Under-12 schools select team which travelled to Durban and Cape Town. “I was the only one selected from my school that year and got to travel in an aeroplane for the first time as well when we went to Cape Town,” he remembers. 8 Unlike many professional footballers, Nange is not active on social media. “I only have WhatsApp on my phone. I deleted both Instagram and Twitter because I had no reason to have it and it was just wasting my data. I think I still have a Facebook account which I don’t use much.” 9 Nange – who is nicknamed “Pogba” – recently acquired his driver’s licence and is planning on buying a Ford Focus ST. 10 Unknown to many is the fact that the Adidas boots he has been using over the last two years have come courtesy of his friend Tiyani Mabunda. The Mamelodi Sundowns midfielder has long made it known that he likes the way Nange plays.
A decent volleyball player who is now turning out for the same football club as his father … here’s ten things you may not have known about Black Leopards midfielder Phathutshedzo Nange.