Downs set to part ways with players

By Drum Digital
05 June 2014

Mamelodi Sundowns set to part ways with the majority of their players.

Premier League champions Mamelodi Sundowns are set to part ways with the majority of their players who were on loan to other clubs last season, director of football Mike Ntombela said in Johannesburg on Thursday.

Only a select few of the players were part of the club's future plans, he said.

"Less than (the number of fingers on) my one hand," he said.

Negotiations with a number of clubs about the services of the surplus players was in progress.

"We have been able to meet with some of the players and we have been following their progress while they were out on loan," Ntombela said.

"I can't state any names right now, because we still have to speak with some of the guys. They should not be hearing it from other people that they are not part of our plans.

"They are still our players and we want to respect them."

High profile players who were on loan from Sundowns last season included Nyasha Mushekwi, Richard Henyekane, Edward Manqele, Musa Nyatama and Themba Zwane.

Sundowns would begin their title defence at home to Maritzburg United on the weekend beginning August 8.

Specific dates and venues of the respective matches were still to be determined.

Prior to the resumption of the league, Sundowns head out to north Africa to prepare for the Caf Champions League.

"The players are on a break and getting much-needed rest but the team will converge once again and continue our preparations for our local and continental obligations," Ntombela said.

Sundowns had a proud record in the Premiership, winning three years in succession, from 1998 to 2000. Before 2014, they also won twice in a row in 2006 and 2007, and would like history to repeat itself next season.

Ntombela said, failing to defend their title would be a huge disappointment for a big club like Sundowns, who had waited seven years for the trophy.

"A club of Sundowns's calibre is always expected to win silverware. If you don't, then there are serious repercussions. And people expect us to have something to show at the end of every season."

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