Zungu could be SA’s big mover this transfer window ... unless Downs spring a last-minute surprise

Bongani Zungu celebrates after the African Cup of Nations, last-16 match between Egypt and South Africa  in Cairo  on July 6, 2019. Picture: Ahmed Hasan/Gallo Images
Bongani Zungu celebrates after the African Cup of Nations, last-16 match between Egypt and South Africa in Cairo on July 6, 2019. Picture: Ahmed Hasan/Gallo Images

In the absence of earth-shattering transfers on the domestic front, the pending move of Bafana Bafana midfielder Bongani Zungu to the Spanish La Liga could be the biggest transaction involving a South African as this month’s transfer window closes at midnight on Friday.

The 27-year-old, who was one of Bafana’s top performers at the Afcon in Egypt last year, dominated the transfer news in Spain following his arrival from France Thursday.

Zungu could be on the verge of joining RCD Mallorca after terms were agreed between his French Ligue 1 side Amiens SC.

According to media reports in Spain, Mallorca and Amiens have agreed on a loan until the end of the season with an option to buy the former Mamelodi Sundowns star.

According to an update posted by news outlet Esports IB3 on its Twitter account, Mallorca will pay a €500 000 (R8 million) loan fee, and the figure could get up to €5 million if the two parties agree on a permanent move.

As things stand, Zungu is on the verge of a big break to a big league and he could be the next South African to ply his trade in La Liga since Tsepo Masilela.

Masilela, who is winding down his career at AmaZulu, joined Getafe on a season-long loan deal from Israeli’s Maccabi Haifa in August 2011, but the defender returned to Israel after the expiry of his contract.

Back at home, many had expected PSL’s top three –Sundowns, Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates – to headline the domestic transfers since the window opened on January 2.

Instead, it was Chiefs who ventured into the market and landed Kenyan international Anthony Akumu Agay on a three-and-a-half year deal.

The midfielder joined Amakhosi from Zambian club Zesco United.

Chiefs this week also announced the extension of contracts of some of their senior players whose current contracts were due to expire at the end of the season.

The list included Bernard Parker, Willard Katsande (both one-year extensions) and Daniel Akpeyi (two years).

It is also believed that goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune has renewed his stay with the club, although Chiefs are yet to confirm this.

This week, Pirates confirmed the release of defender Asavela Mbekile, who struggled to get game time after he joined Bucs from Sundowns in 2018.

The 33-year-old has been handed his clearance after asking to be released from his contract, Pirates confirmed.

Last week, the Buccaneers also shipped out defender

Justice Chabalala to Bloemfontein Celtic on a five-month loan, alongside Tebogo Tlolane‚ who moved to Maritzburg United on loan for the remainder of the season.

Meanwhile, all eyes are on Sundowns to see if the Brazilians can spring a last-minute surprise to beat the midnight transfer deadline.

The defending Absa Premiership champions are in the market for a striker and speculation has been that they were courting SuperSport United sharpshooter Bradley Grobler.

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