Reneilwe Letsholonyane

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Reneilwe Letsholonyane
Personal information
Full name Reneilwe Letsholonyane [1]
Date of birth (1982-06-09) 9 June 1982 (age 40)
Place of birth Soweto, South Africa
Height 1.73 m (5 ft 8 in)
Position(s) Midfielder
Youth career
Meadowlands Porto
Kagiso Masters
Pimville Young Stars
Jomo Cosmos
Senior career*
2002–2003 Hellenic FC
2003–2004 Dangerous Darkies
2004–2006 PJ Stars 49 (8)
2006–2008 Jomo Cosmos 70 (7)
2008–2016 Kaizer Chiefs 183 (22)
2016–2018 SuperSport United 68 (4)
2019 Highlands Park 11 (0)
2020–2021 TS Galaxy 11 (0)
National team
2008–2019 South Africa 50 (2)
*Club domestic league appearances and goals

Reneilwe "Yeye" Letsholonyane (born 9 June 1982) is a South African retired professional soccer player who played as a midfielder. He represented the South Africa national team at international level.


Early life

Letsholonyane grew up kicking a rugby ball in White City, Jabavu in Soweto.

His talent blossomed at Morris Isaacson High School where he started playing for Jomo Cosmos. His parents did not believe that he could make a living from playing soccer because they knew it will be a short career, but they encouraged him anyway. His first pair of soccer boots were Puma SE Rangers that his parents bought for him. [2]

Club career

Letsholonyane mainly played in the lower leagues until joining Jomo Cosmos in 2006.

Two years later he signed with Kaizer Chiefs under Muhsin Ertugral where he has since been an integral part of the line-up despite regularly battling injuries. Letsholonyane made his debut alongside Gordon Gilbert on 30 August 2008 in a 2–1 loss against Thanda Royal Zulu. He came close to scoring as he took a powerful shot outside the box but crashed onto the crossbar. [3] Letsholonyane scored the winning penalty in the 2008 MTN 8 final and Chiefs won 4–3 over Mamelodi Sundowns. [4] He got his first call-up after the final. He missed most of the 2011–12 season after picking up a knee injury on international duty, and only got featured in just 13 league matches for Chiefs. [5] In the 2012–13 season during Chiefs' league and cup double triumph he played 26 league matches and scored three goals. [6] Halfway through the 2013–14 season, Letsholonyane's career nearly ended against Lamontville Golden Arrows when his leg was hacked inwards, he came off and was replaced by Josta Dladla, Chiefs won 1–0. He only strained and damaged his ligaments and was ruled out for the last game of the year against AmaZulu on 22 December 2013. [7] He scored in the MTN 8 quarter final against Mpumalanga Black Aces in the second minute in a 4–0 win and was voted Man of the Match. [8] Letsholonyane scored his first league goal of 2014–15 in a 2–1 win over Mpumalanga Black Aces. [9] He scored in the MTN8 second leg semi-final against Platinum Stars in the 57th minute to give Chiefs a 4–0 aggregate lead on 24 August 2014, he won his second Man of the Match of the tournament. [10] Letsholonyane scored in a 2–0 win over Platinum Stars on 27 August 2014. [11] He scored a brace against University of Pretoria on 13 September 2014 in a 2–1 win. [12] He scored an equaliser in a 1–1 draw against Moroka Swallows on 22 October 2014. [13]

On 1 July 2021, Letsholonyane announced his retirement from professional football.

International career

Letsholonyane played for South Africa since 2008. He made his debut in September 2008 against Malawi in Germiston. [14] He scored the second goal in a 5–0 win over Guatemala on 31 May 2010. He played at the 2010 FIFA World Cup and the 2013 African Cup of Nations. He earned his 50th cap in a 2015 African Cup of Nations qualifier in a 2–1 win over Sudan. [15]

Personal life

His younger brother Ruben is a soccer player. He lives in Fourways, Johannesburg. “Life in the suburbs is somewhat lonely. Everyone minds his own business. You hardly ever see neighbours chatting over the fence. “I miss the feeling that exists in the townships of being a member of one big family. Asking for a loan of sugar, washing powder or salt from the neighbour when your own runs out,” he said. [2] Letsholonyane's father, Andrew Ramogangwane Letsholonyane died on 16 February 2015 at the age of 59.

He is married to Mpho Maboi a sport anchor.[ citation needed ]

Career statistics

International goals

Scores and results list South Africa's goal tally first, score column indicates score after each Letsholonyane goal.
List of international goals scored by Reneilwe Letsholonyane
131 May 2010 Peter Mokaba Stadium, Polokwane, South AfricaFlag of Guatemala.svg  Guatemala 2–05–0 Friendly
215 November 2013 Somhlolo National Stadium, Lobamba, SwazilandFlag of Eswatini.svg  Swaziland 2–03–0Friendly


Kaizer Chiefs

SuperSport United

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  1. "FIFA World Cup South Africa 2010: List of Players" (PDF). FIFA. 4 June 2010. p. 28. Archived from the original (PDF) on 16 June 2010. Retrieved 16 April 2014.
  2. 1 2
  3. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 23 September 2014.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. "AF Mobi All past MTN8 finals". Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  5. "Reneilwe Letsholonyane - Array -". Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  6. Strack-Zimmermann, Benjamin. "Reneilwe Letsholonyane". Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  7. "Reneilwe Letsholonyane ruled out for Kaizer Chiefs vs AmaZulu". Kick Off. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  8. "Reneilwe Letsholonyane Says Stuart Baxter Made The Difference". 3 August 2014. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  9. "Absa Premiership Report: Kaizer Chiefs - Mpumalanga Black Aces". 13 August 2014. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  10. "MTN8 Full Time Report: Kaizer Chiefs V Platinum Stars". 24 August 2014. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  11. "Absa Premiership Match Report: Platinum Stars 0-2 Kaizer Chiefs 27 August 2014". 27 August 2014. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  12. "Absa Premiership Report: Kaizer Chiefs 2-1 University of Pretoria 13 August 2012". 13 September 2014. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  13. "Absa Premiership Half Time Report: Kaizer Chiefs 1-1 Moroka Swallows, 22 October 2014". 22 October 2014. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  14. " - South African Football Association". Retrieved 28 March 2018.
  15. "Bafana coach Shakes Mashaba heaps praise on midfield stars Thulani Serero and Reneilwe Letsholonyane". Kick Off. Retrieved 28 March 2018.