Sekhukhune wrestle with PSL top guns in market

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Willard Katsande was unveiled by Sekhukhune United on Friday. Photo: Sekhukhune United Twitter
Willard Katsande was unveiled by Sekhukhune United on Friday. Photo: Sekhukhune United Twitter

SPORT


The current PSL player transfer window has truly been a buyer’s market.

As they prepare for the 2021/22 season, premiership clubs have gone on a buying bonanza to bolster their squads.

Understandably, due to the tough economic times brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic, not all clubs have the financial muscle to make wholesale signings.

Interestingly, the return of Kaizer Chiefs to the player market after a Fifa ban saw them competing with fellow traditional league giants Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates, who have also made mass signings.

Not to be outdone, newly promoted Sekhukhune United have also embarked on a signing spree over the past few weeks.

Big three spare no expense

As expected, the richest clubs in the land spent big at the marketplace.

Amakhosi have a new-look team across all departments – technical staff, goalkeepers, defence, midfield and strikers.

The CAF Champions League runners-up have signed goalkeeper Brandon Peterson, Sifiso Hlanti, Phathutshedzo Nange, Njabulo Ngcobo, Sibusiso Mabiliso, Kgaogelo Sekgota, Thabani Dube, Cole Alexander and Keagan Dolly.

With his penalty-stopping abilities against Orlando Pirates in the Carling Cup last weekend, Peterson proved that he had the talent to become Chiefs’ first-choice stopper, and soon.

Amakhosi have been undone by keeper inconsistencies over the past few seasons and this could be their strongest goalkeeping department in years.

The acquisition of four defenders – Hlanti, Ngcobo, Mabiliso and Dube – is also a clear response to the team’s biggest weakness last season: defence.

Meanwhile, defending league champions Sundowns have signed Pavol Šafranko, Thabiso Kutumela, Grant Kekana, Divine Lunga, Neo Maema and Sifiso Ngobeni.

Pirates, on the other hand, have added Goodman Mosele, Monnapule Saleng, Bandile Shandu and Kwanda Mngonyama.

It is surprising that Swallows FC have not been aggressive in the market, despite their nest having been raided by Chiefs when Amakhosi snapped up Hlanti, Ngcobo and Sekgota, with Given Thibedi also being recalled from loan.

The Birds have only made three signings in Mwape Musonda, Thandani Ntshumayelo and Khethukuthula Ndlovu. They also have acquired the services of Saleng on loan from Pirates.

Rookies join in the signing spree

Outside of the giants, Sekhukhune United have been the busiest in the market.

Babina Noko have signed Willard Katsande, Edwin Gyimah, Charlton Mashumba, Ryan de Jongh, Talent Chawapiwa, Pogiso Mahlangu, Nicholus Lukhubeni (loan), Vusimuzi Mncube, Thabo Rakhale, Tshediso Patjie, Tumelo Matona, Kamohelo Sithole and Seun Ledwaba.

On Friday, the team also unveiled Justice Chabalala – on loan from Pirates – Baroka FC defender Cheslyn Jampies, Blessing Sarupinda from Caps United in Zimbabwe and goalkeeper Toaster Nsabata from Zesco United in Zambia.

But they have also parted ways with 18 players, most of whom helped them to win promotion from the GladAfrica Championship last season.

The club was emboldened by its victory over Royal AM at the Johannesburg High Court and went on a shopping spree to prepare for life in the top flight.

Its deals were not in vain as the PSL indeed released the fixture list for the DStv Premiership, with the club forming part of the 16 teams.

Coach MacDonald Makhubedu has his work cut out for him to prove that the club is indeed worthy to play in the premiership.

Worth a mention

Reinvigorated KwaZulu-Natal powerhouse AmaZulu also unveiled a host of new signings this week. Usuthu have signed Keagan Buchanan, Mxolisi Kunene, Matarr Ceesay, Tercious Malepe, Tshepang Moremi, Philani Zulu and Lindani Shange.

Judging by their signings, the Premiership runners-up look set to play an even more attacking style of football. They also boosted their roster ahead of their anticipated debut in the CAF Champions League.

Not to be outdone, Maritzburg United have bolstered their squad with Brylon Petersen, Lifa Hlongwane, Rowan Human, Zukile Kewuti, Alfred Ndengane, Brandon Theron, Richard Zumah, Tato Lesoma and Renaldo Leaner.

  • The PSL confirmed this week that the domestic transfer window will close on August 31


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Gomolemo Motshwane  

Sport journalist

+27 11 713 9001
gomolemo.motshwane@citypress.co.za
www.citypress.co.za
69 Kingsway Rd, Auckland Park

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