The 2023 Nedbank Cup in Numbers
PIC: Orlando Pirates goalkeeper Sipho Chaine played the most minutes this season
Orlando Pirates emerged victorious in the final of the 2023 Nedbank Cup as they claimed a first win in South Africa’s most prestigious knockout competition in nine years.
The 2-1 victory over Sekhukhune United was a fitting end to an incredible journey in the competition and brought the curtain down on another excellent Nedbank Cup campaign.
We round up the numbers on this season’s tournament.
0 – Sekhukhune had never won a Nedbank Cup game before this season, going out in the Last 32 in the previous two seasons.
1 – This Nedbank Cup title is the first time a Spanish coach has lifted the trophy after Pirates’ Jose Riveiro added his name to the list of past winners. He will hope it is the first of many and that he can eclipse Stuart Baxter’s record of three titles.
1 – A packed Loftus Versfeld Stadium hosted the Nedbank Cup final for the first time, becoming the 12th different venue to stage the decider since 2008.
1 – Despite Sekhukhune United’s loss, they will represent South Africa in the CAF Confederation Cup in 2023/24, their first foray into continental football. This is because Pirates have qualified for the CAF Champions League through their league position.
2 – Gauteng ABC Motsepe League side Dondol Stars produced the biggest shocks of the 2023 Nedbank Cup as they ousted SuperSport United in the Last 32 and AmaZulu in the Last 16. They also took eventual winners Pirates to penalties in the quarterfinals, but were unlucky losers! What a maiden campaign from the side.
3 – Three of Pirates’ ties this season went to extra-time, and they were just a few minutes away from making that four before they came up with a very late winner in the final. The Buccaneers had never before gone to extra-time more than once in a Nedbank Cup campaign.
3 – Pirates duo Ndabayithethwa Ndlondlo and Miguel Timm appeared in their third successive Nedbank Cup final. They both played for TTM (2021) and Marumo Gallants (2022) before turning out for Pirates this year. They have two gold medals and a silver in that time.
3 – Pirates secured a third Nedbank Cup final triumph to go with their wins in 2011 and 2014. That makes them the joint second most successful side in the competition since it was first played 16 seasons ago, behind only Mamelodi Sundowns (2008, 2015, 2020, 2022).
4 – Four players were sent-off in the Nedbank Cup this season (up from just two in 2022). Keagan Buchanan (AmaZulu), Travis Graham (Maritzburg United), Philani Cele (Royal AM) and Tonny Khoza (Liver Brothers) were the unlucky quartet.
5 – This was the fifth Nedbank Cup final appearance for Pirates, who have moved level with Sundowns for the most since 2008.
6 – Stellenbosch FC striker Iqraam Rayners was the top-scorer in the 2023 Nedbank Cup with six goals, having scored a brace each against Swallows FC (Last 32), TS Galaxy (Last 16) and Mamelodi Sundowns (Quarterfinals). It is the most scored in a single campaign since the competition record of 10 set by Sundowns’ Nyasha Mushekwi in 2012.
6 – The biggest win in this season’s Nedbank Cup came as Sekhukhune defeated fourth-tier Liver Brothers 6-0 in the Last 32. The most goals scored in a single game was nine though as Stellenbosch won 6-3 away at TS Galaxy in an epic encounter.
5 – There were five penalty shootouts in the Nedbank Cup this year (down from six in 2022). Winners Pirates were involved in one of those as they needed spot-kicks to get past plucky Dondol Stars in the quarterfinals.
9 – Sekhukhune had nine different scorers in their 2023 Nedbank Cup campaign, the most of any team. They were Rodrick Kabwe and Chibuike Ohizu (two each), Daniel Cardoso, Victor Letsoalo, Given Mashikinya, Vusimuzi Mncube, Elias Mokwana, Tashreeq Morris and Sibusiso Vilakazi.
11 – The number of goals scored by Sekhukhune and Stellenbosch FC in this year’s competition, the most by any of the teams.
16 – Sundowns extended their competition record unbeaten run to 16 games before they finally lost 2-1 at Stellenbosch FC in this year’s quarterfinals. Their previous outright defeat had been to Chippa United in the Last 32 in 2019.
67 – There were 73 different goal-scorers in the 2023 Nedbank Cup, which is six more than last year. Four of those were own goals though from Lee Langeveldt (Stellenbosch FC), Thabo Matlaba (Royal AM), Kamogelo Mogaswa (Pretoria Callies), Bulelani Nikani (Polokwane City). That is the same number of players to put the ball into their own net as in the previous campaign.
96 – There were a total of 96 goals scored in the 31 Nedbank Cup matches this season, a full 15 more than in the 2022 campaign. That is an average of 3.10 per game, which is a very healthy number for competitive football.
550 – Pirates goalkeeper Sipho Chaine featured in the most minutes in the Nedbank Cup this campaign, though that was only two minutes more than Buccaneers winger Monnapule Saleng. Chaine was in the Bloemfontein Celtic side that lost the 2020 final to Sundowns.