Local News - Issue 227

Manyisa Yet To Extend Pirates Stay With Downs Offer Looming
Oupa Manyisa’s future remains hanging as he is yet to sign a new contract at Orlando Pirates – eight months before his current deal expires. In the meantime, Mamelodi Sundowns is hovering in the horizon, waiting to snap up Manyisa and hand him a five-year contract that will move him into the bracket of the top five earners in the PSL – a list which currently has three Brazilian players and two from Kaizer Chiefs. Pirates boss Irvin Khoza is handling this matter on behalf of the club. Manyisa can only start ‘officially’ talking to other clubs in January when he enters the last six months of his contract.

Lethola Mofokeng has signed for Bloemfontein Celtic. ‘Kanu’, who previously played for Phunya Sele Sele, confirms that he has penned a one-year deal with an option for a further two years. The 29-year-old from Bethlehem in the Free State has also represented Jomo Cosmos and Black Leopards. Mofokeng scored a hat-trick in 13 minutes for Celtic when they beat Polokwane City 3-1 during the Multichoice Diski Challenge match at Siwelele Park on Saturday. Celtic have also confirmed the signing of former Roses United attacking midfielder Paulos Kgadi following a request by head coach Ernst Middendorp for the management to recruit more attacking players.

Orlando Pirates and Mamelodi Sundowns are chasing the signature of Black Leopards midfielder Siphelele Ntshangase. Leopards already lost Edgar Manaka to Platinum Stars in August, and now could find it hard to hang on to Ntshangase, who was one of their star performers last term. According to a source close to the player, Bucs and Downs are keeping a close eye on Ntshangase. "There is huge interest from both Pirates and Sundowns," says the source. "Chippa United were the first to show interest but it's obvious they can't compete with both Pirates and Sundowns.

AmaZulu assistant coach Wilfred Mugeyi will be in charge of all the club's training sessions while head coach Craig Rosslee is still in the doldrums. Usuthu's directors released a statement last Friday announcing Mugeyi would supervise the crucial Telkom Knockout match against Bloemfontein Celtic. They said Rosslee had been sidelined “due to a poor run of form and security reasons”. After the Durban outfit won the thrilling encounter 3-2 against Celtic, PRO and communications manager Philani Mabaso gave the latest update on Rosslee's situation. “Nothing has changed regarding the released statements from last week,” Mabaso said. “Mugeyi is still in charge of the team until further notice. He will take charge of all the training sessions while we are waiting for the club directors to get back to us regarding the matter.” Beleaguered AmaZulu are the only side without a win in the Absa Premiership this season. They will next host Chippa United in the League on 18 October. A group of AmaZulu fans took their unhappiness about under-fire coach Craig Rosslee to another level after marching into the club's training ground last week. Several fans went into the team training and voiced their unhappiness about Roslee and told general manager Peter O'Connor and Lunga Sokhela that they want the club to get rid of Rosslee.

Tiyani Mabunda is now free to play for Free State Stars after sorting out his issues with Mamelodi Sundowns. The former Black Leopards midfielder had been training with Stars for the past few weeks, but was unable to play for Ea Lla Koto due to undisclosed issues with the Brazilians. Mabunda trained with Mpumalanga Black Aces before travelling down to Bethlehem to join Stars in what reported as a loan deal from Sundowns. Stars coach Tom Saintfiet has confirmed that has since been given the green light by club management to field the player.

Bafana Bafana defender Anele Ngcongca is likely to miss the Afcon qualifier against Congo on Saturday due to injury. According to the team’s media officer Matlhomola Morake all players have arrived in camp except for Ngcongca, who plays his club football for RKC Genk in Belgium. “According to his club, he is injured but we are still trying to get more details,” he says. Ngcongca played for Genk in their 0-0 draw at Anderlecht over the past weekend and as it stands, Safa will be in touch with Genk to establish the nature of Ngcongca’s injury.

Kaizer Chiefs’ amazing start to the season of a dozen consecutive wins has seen them equal Mamelodi Sundowns' record for the longest domestic winning streak in South African history. Chiefs’ magnificent run of 12 wins in a row this season, during which they have scored 21 goals and conceded just twice, has ushered them into the best winning spell in all local competitions since the start of the modern day PSL in August, 1996. Amakhosi have equalled the record set by Sundowns, who put together 14 successive wins in domestic PSL competitions between January 13 and February 28, 2007 – although their overall winning run including continental competitions got a slight dent when they were held to a one-all draw by Desportivo Maputo in Mozambique in a first-leg, first-round CAF Champions League tie. Despite that draw in Maputo, Sundowns still managed to stretch their unbeaten run to 19 games and during that period they won 11 League games in a row, won another three Champions League matches (two draws) and had three more victories in the Absa Cup. That 11-game winning spell in the league – which came under the guidance of Gordon Igesund – set the Brazilians on course to winning the Absa Premiership title at the end of the 2006/07 season, winning games against Orlando Pirates, Chiefs, SuperSport United and Moroka Swallows during that impressive run. It remains the longest consecutive winning run in the league since the start of the PSL. Sundowns won 10 league games in a row last season on their way to lifting their sixth League title, while Chiefs racked up nine consecutive wins in the same season before their 2013/14 title chase petered out. However, Chiefs now hold the record of being the first club in South African top-flight football to win 12 consecutive games in all official competitions in a single PSL season.
Longest Unbeaten Run
19 matches – Mamelodi Sundowns, 2006/07
Longest Domestic Winning Run
14 matches – Mamelodi Sundowns, 2006/07 & Kaizer Chiefs, 2014/15
Longest Winning Run in a Single Season
12 matches – Kaizer Chiefs, 2014/15
Longest Winning Run in League
11 matches – Mamelodi Sundowns, 2006/07

Kaizer Chiefs will host holders Platinum Stars in the Telkom Knockout quarter-finals, while Orlando Pirates will entertain Ajax Cape Town. In the other ties, Absa Premiership champions Mamelodi Sundowns will welcome struggling AmaZulu, and Bidvest Wits will face visiting SuperSport United. The PSL decided the match-ups via a draw on Monday, with the fixtures originally set for the weekend of 25 October. The League, however, are yet to confirm dates and venues.

TKO last-eight fixtures:
Kaizer Chiefs vs Platinum Stars
Orlando Pirates vs Ajax Cape Town
Mamelodi Sundowns vs AmaZulu
Bidvest Wits vs SuperSport United

Bloemfontein Celtic are set to part ways with their head coach Ernst Middendorp following the club’s loss in the Telkom Knockout over the weekend.
Phunya Sele Sele were knocked out in the last 16 by AmaZulu on Saturday at Princess Magogo Stadium and according to a source, the German’s time at Celtic is up. “Celtic’s management is fed up because remember it is not just about losing to AmaZulu. It is also about the fact that Celtic have won just one match out of seven in the league and the team is in 14th position,” the source revealed. According to some reports, former Celtic coach Clinton Larsen is set for a return to the hot-seat. Larsen has been coaching Roses United until now, which is the club owned by the family of Celtic’s new owner Max Tshabalala.

Mamelodi Sundowns coach Mosimane confirms assistant coach Mokoena appointment. Sundowns` mentor Pitso Mosimane has backed his new assistant coach Rhulani Mokoena to go far, saying "he is the future". Mokoena recently joined Manqoba Mngqithi and Alex 'Barnes' Bapela as assistants to Mosimane. Mokoena sat on the bench when the Brazilians beat University of Pretoria 2-1 in a Telkom Knockout last-16 tie in Tshwane on Saturday.

Ajax Cape Town defender Ayabulela Magqwaka looks certain to pull out of the Bafana Bafana squad through injury, judging by comments from club coach Roger de Sa. Magqwaka, 18, has been unable to train since straining a calf muscle on Tuesday, with Bafana set to face Congo in back-to-back Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers on October 11 and 15. "We have advised Bafana that he is injured, he couldn’t train for the last few days," De Sa said after his team's 3-0 victory over Mpumalanga Black Aces in the Telkom Knockout on Sunday. De Sa, though, says the decision on Magqwaka's availability for Bafana ultimately rests with the national side's medical team.

Mamelodi Sundowns have finally paid striker Edward Manqele's salary, allowing the player to take care of his monthly debit orders. Manqele's salary was due last week but was not paid in time with the rest of the Sundowns players as the saga regarding his exit from Sundowns continues to drag on. The former Free State Stars striker is currently kicking his heels at home as the Brazilians claim that he belongs to Chippa United after they reached a loan agreement before the deadline of the transfer window period. Manqele has already taken the Patrice Motsepe-owned side to the PSL Dispute Resolution Chamber for an unpaid signing-on fee. The player's agent Josiah Mphono has confirmed that Sundowns have finally paid his client's salary.

Moroka Swallows are still battling to secure a work visa for their new Brazilian midfielder Thiago Rodrigo Dos Santos. Dos Santos joined Swallows last month on a three-year contract. And Dube Birds officials have been hounding Home Affairs in a bid to secure the player's papers.

Namibian striker Theophilus Tsowaseb is back home after his proposed move to Chippa United collapsed due to paperwork issues, according to the club's team manager Peter Koutroulis. Tsowaseb linked up with the Chilli Boys in July after being deemed surplus to requirements at Pirates, who he penned a three-year deal with in February following a trial. However, Koutroulis confirmed the player, affectionately known as 'Ronaldo', is no longer with the Absa Premiership returnees. Tsowaseb is poised to rejoin his former Windhoek-based side, also called Orlando Pirates.

It’s looks like Ruzaigh Gamildien will have to wait a while longer before being allowed back into the AmaZulu first team. The former Bloemfontein Celtic midfielder was sent to train with the reserves after being found guilty of ill-discipline together with Bongi Macala, whose contract was later terminated. AmaZulu spokesperson Philani Mabaso confirms that Gamildien is still not back with the first team. Meanwhile, Macala says is not yet ready to talk about his acrimonious departure from Usuthu.

NFD side Vasco da Gama are set to become a club that young footballers aspire to join now that Portuguese top-flight outfit Vitoria de Guimaraes are their European partner. Vasco has always been a strong, credible community-based club with a sound youth setup. But the identity of the club is shifting now that they have a link to a top club in Europe. Vasco’s partnership with the Portuguese club will see coaching education filter through from Vitoria de Guimaraes to the Parow Park club, which will result in stronger coaching networks, opportunities for players to train abroad and for a sharing of knowledge and technical expertise. Vasco are now under the ownership of the TMM Group, whose CEO Mario Ferreira is a shareholder at Vitoria de Guimaraes and is passionate about giving back to the community and moving patiently into the top-flight of South African football. Since TMM Holdings (PTY) Ltd became the majority shareholder of Vasco da Gama, only brothers Carlos, Paulo and Mario Das Neves stayed on as shareholders from the previous board of directors. The rest of the previous Vasco shareholders will no longer be involved with the club in any official capacity. For now, the current Vasco technical team of Tony de Nobrega, Keenin Lesch and Kenny Gertse have remained leading the first team.

Former Ajax Cape Town coach Muhsin Ertugral is ready to return to work after attending to some family matters back home in Turkey. Ertugral resigned from Ajax after one of his family members passed away earlier this year. The former Kaizer Chiefs coach is now free to start looking for a new job and is expected back in the country before the end of this month. Ertugral was earlier linked with the job at SuperSport United only to discover that he was duped by someone masquerading as club chairman Khulu Sibiya.

Orlando Pirates captain Lucky Lekgwathi’s return to action has been pushed back even further. The veteran defender last featured for the Buccaneers in the 2013/14 season as he battled his way back from a foot injury. However, Lekgwathi was struck down with flu, meaning he was unlikely to feature in the Telkom Knockout Cup victory over Polokwane City on Sunday.

Reports in Ghana suggest that former Orlando Pirates goalkeeper Fatau Dauda has completed his move back to AshantiGold. The 29-year-old Ghanaian international has penned a short-term deal after leaving Chippa United, who him left after less than two months at the club. Chippa said that Dauda left because of major personal problems, though the player’s agent said that his client left because he was not paid his signing-on fee.

SA players abroad
Steven Pienaar
lasted 64 minutes of his comeback game for Everton as they lost 2-1 at Manchester United in the English Premiership yesterday. It was a first outing for ‘Schillo’ in six weeks and his return comes slightly ahead of schedule with Everton only expecting him to return later in October. It could not come soon enough for The Toffees though as they battle on the home front and in Europe with a small squad of players.
There was a boost for national team coach Shakes Mashaba when striker Tokelo Rantie was able to take his place on the bench, but did not get on, for Bournemouth in their 2-1 Championship win at Bolton Wanderers. The striker picked up a knock while on national team duty in the September African Nations Cup qualifiers and had barely featured since, but did score four goals in a game for the club’s development side a week ago.
There was still no sign of Kagisho Dikgacoi for Cardiff City though as his move away from Crystal Palace at the end of last season looks more foolish with each passing week.
Furman, who is likely to play a major role in the Congo double-header coming up for Bafana, played the full game for Doncaster Rovers in League One as they won 2-1 at Scunthorpe United.
Young left-back Kgosi Ntlhe missed Peterborough United’s 2-2 draw with Oldham Athletic through injury.
Serero and Kamohelo Mokotjo were both in action in the Netherlands, but had to settle for draws. Ajax were held 0-0 by PEC Zwolle, while Mokotjo’s FC Twente drew 2-2 with AZ Alkmaar.
Jali played the full game for his Belgian side Oostende as they suffered an early red card and played most of the game with 10 men, losing 3-1 at Ayanda Patosi’s Lokeren. Patosi was again left out of the Lokeren squad for that game, but Anele Ngcongca played for Genk in their 0-0 draw at Anderlecht.
Darren Keet, who will also be linking up with the national team, kept a clean sheet again as his Belgian side Kortrijk won 2-0 at Charleroi.
Mark Mayambela, who has been influential off the bench for Swedish side Djurgarden in recent weeks, was introduced with 15 minutes remaining but could not help his side avoid a surprise 2-1 defeat to Sive Phekezela’s Gefle. Xolani Mdaki did not make it off the bench for Djurgarden, but Ebrahim Seedat played the final few minutes for his second-tier side Degerfors in their 3-3 draw with Ljungskile.
May Mahlangu started from the bench as Goteborg lost 3-0 at IFK Norrkoping, ending their hopes of winning the league this season which has now been claimed by Malmo.
Ayanda Nkili came on for the final few minutes as Orebro thumped Elfsborg 5-1.

Lebogang Phiri was also a sub for Brondby as they beat Aalborg 2-1 in Denmark, and Joel Untersee came on at halftime for his side FC Vaduz as they lost 3-0 to FC Zurich in Switzerland.