Cloete signed by United

2012-07-21 00:00

MARITZBURG United have continued their spending spree in the transfer market and yesterday confirmed the signing of Orlando Pirates left back Ruben Cloete.

The 29-year-old spent two seasons at the Soweto club, but battled to break into the first side regularly last term. He joins United on a one-year deal and has already met up with his team-mates at their new Carter High School training complex.

“We are thrilled to welcome a player of Ruben’s pedigree to the club and these are the types of signings that can take the team to the next level,” Team of Choice chairperson Farouk Kadodia told Weekend Witness yesterday.

While Cloete also provides an option at left midfield, Kadodia confirmed that he would most likely be employed in United’s defence.

The left fullback position is one that has been an area of concern for United, with youngster Thabang Matuka the only natural left footed player turning out in that position last season.

Rheece Evans played much of his football at left back last season, and while he was largely impressive, would be more comfortable playing on the opposite side of the field where he would swing in crosses with his favoured right boot.

“I firmly believe this is the right signing to bring the stability we need to our defence and to the left back position,” Kadodia added. “He can play a pivotal role for us.”

United may still have to venture into the transfer market one more time.

The issue of Senegalese centre back Mor Diouf is one that has not been resolved. The player has caught the attention of many clubs, including an MLS (American first tier) franchise, but United have not received an offer that they are willing to consider.

“The issue has dragged on for a while now and we are hoping to have reached clarity on the matter by Monday,” Kadodia said. “If we do not confirm any offers, then Mor will have to accept that he is staying with us and that he will be a Maritzburg United player.”

Should a deal be struck for Diouf, Kadodia revealed that there were a number of foreign players in line to replace him.

“We have headhunted players from Africa who are in waiting and we would replace him [Diouf] when we needed to.”

Meanwhile, last season’s flop signing from Nigeria, Prince Olomu, is training with the newly promoted University of Pretoria, though he is still under contract at United.

Striker Diyo Sibisi has had his contract mutually terminated and is currently a free agent.

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