Top 5 Under-19 rising soccer stars to watch

2014-04-24 15:08

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Mawande Mvumvu attended the Under-19 Metropolitan Premier Cup, which ended on Monday.

The 26-year-old annual showpiece has unearthed many soccer stars, among them Ajax Amsterdam playmaker Thulani Serero.

Here are five promising players to watch in the near future:

» Mpho Mathekga – Mamelodi Sundowns goalkeeper

As much as Mamelodi Sundowns displayed great passing football going upfront, their defensive work was not the best, but Mathekga displayed outstanding performances as the last man in defence.

He pulled off impressive saves in one-on-one situations and played a big role in his side reaching the final in which they lost 1-0 to Ajax Cape Town.

For his efforts, Mathekga was deservedly named goalkeeper of the tournament.

Watch out Itumeleng Khune, Mathekga is coming for that number 1 Bafana Bafana jersey.

» Aghmat Ceres – Ajax Cape Town defender

Tough opponents such as SuperSport United and School of Excellence struggled to crack the Ajax defence, thanks to Ceres’ contribution.

Ceres marshalled the Ajax back line with excellence, playing an important role in leading the Cape side to its 6th Under-19 Metropolitan Premier Cup title.

Having been with the team’s junior structures, Ceres has participated in almost all Urban Warriors junior teams, including in the Manchester United Under-15 Premier Cup in 2012.

» Justin Jacobus – Ajax Cape Town attacking midfielder

Jacobus, playing just behind the strikers, troubled opposition defences with quick runs into the box.

His ability to win possession and his accuracy of passes were a marvel to watch and were instrumental in the Cape side’s dominance over strong opponents.

This was his second Metropolitan Cup appearance in succession, both of which Ajax won.

» Sphelele Khebesi – Mamelodi Sundowns forward

If Sundowns fail to promote this shining star into the senior team in a year or two, then the Chloorkop outfit doesn’t believe in young talent.

Khebesi consistently dished out outstanding performances and deservedly bagged the player of the tournament award.

He played an influential role with the Bafana ba style juniors, with his pin-point passing and great off-the-ball running identical to that of the senior team.

» Brendan Konki – Kaizer Chiefs forward

At the current rate, the 17-year-old Konki looks set to be the future saviour of the PSL’s goal drought. Konki’s good eye for goals coupled with speed saw him netting two goals in Chiefs’ opening fixture, a 4-0 victory against Beacon Spurs.

Representing Chiefs’ Under-17 side in the Soweto Regional League last year, he scored 40 goals in less than 30 matches.

It was, however, unfortunate that he could not see through the Metropolitan tournament after Chiefs were knocked out in the last 16 by five-time champions Hellenic.

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