The support of the fans in the stands at the 2023 Men’s Varsity Football competition has been overwhelming. Their enthusiastic cheering has spurred their respective teams on to great heights, and none more so than those of the Orange Army, UJ.
Varsity Football spoke to Mhlobowethu Hoyi, the head of student life at UJ, about the Orange Army’s supporters.
Where were you born and raised and where are you currently residing?
I was born in a small town called Port Alfred in the Eastern Cape. I am currently residing in Kempton Park.
When did the love for soccer start?
It started when I was 15 years old. I used to play for a club called Port Alfred United Brothers (PAUBS) as the goalkeeper.
Take us through your journey of becoming a Super Fan.
I decided early on that I wanted to be a part of the Orange Army supporters, and since then I have never stopped.
How did the UJ Football Club become the team they are now?
They have grown greatly, first qualifying for the ABC Motsepe playoffs and then also qualifying to campaign there next season.
Who are your favourite soccer clubs?
In South Africa it is Kaizer Chiefs, in the English Premier League it is Chelsea, in Germany it is Bayern Munich and in Spain it is Madrid.
What has been your best and worst moment since being with UJ?
The best moment was witnessing both the ladies and men winning the Varsity Football tournament. The worst moment was when we lost to TUT last year in the final of the Men’s Varsity tournament.
How are your preparations for home games?
I do my normal job by going to the office and making sure that my primary job duties are done. After work, I go home and change and meet other supporters outside the sports office.
How are the fans and logistics when travelling?
Most of the time we organise transport for them, and they are very cooperative.
How's your relationship with the players and technical team?
The relationship is perfectly well with all the teams including the technical team.
Full fixture list HERE.
Information on tickets HERE.
By Gontse Hlophe