Local News - Issue 275

Sundowns Sign A Colombian and Ivorian

Mamelodi Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane has confirmed the signing of Colombian striker Leonardo Castro and Ivorian defender Bangaly Soumahoro. Mosimane revealed the news after Sundowns reached the uThungulu Mayoral Cup Final with a 4-0 demolition of Thanda Royal Zulu in Richards Bay over the weekend. "He's an Ivorian and we have signed him also," Mosimane said of Soumahoro, who played against Thanda. Last month Downs had registered Zimbabwean Cuthbert Malajila and newcomers Mogakolodi Ngele (Botswana) and Fiston Abdul Razak (Burundi) as three of their five permitted foreigners for the season.

SAFA has written to the PSL seeking clarification about Tsepo Masilela’s injury before considering any disciplinary actions. The Kaizer Chiefs left-back was called up for Bafana Bafana’s African Nations Cup qualifier against Mauritania, but he pulled out because of a knee injury. SAFA requested Masilela report to camp so that he can be assessed by national team doctors as stipulated by FIFA rules, but he didn’t show up. According to SAFA head of communications Dominic Chimhavi, they have written a letter to the PSL seeking clarification. “As people know, as an association we can’t deal with clubs directly, we have to go via the PSL and the same applies when we call up players for national team duty,” Chimhavi said. “So we have written a letter to the PSL CEO Mr Brand de Villiers seeking further information about Masilela’s injury. The information we get from the PSL will help us complete our investigation before we can think about taking any disciplinary action. As stipulated in the FIFA rules, any injured player must come to the national team to be examined by our doctors and that did not happen. We need to establish the reasons for this.” If the matter is taken to a SAFA DC and Masilela is found guilty, he could miss Kaizer Chiefs’ next match against SuperSport United as per Article 5 of FIFA rules.

The South African Coaches Football Association (SAFCA) has released a statement regarding the selection criteria for national teams. SAFCA technical advisor Ted Dumitru stressed that any successful football nation is guided by policy. The press release read, in part: “The work on the policy is done collectively with the involvement of the Technical Committee, Technical Director, national coaches and experts on related support systems like medical, nutrition, physiology, psychology etc. “The task is of highest responsibility and not easy to complete. In defining the policy of national teams there are key factors to be considered. Selection of players is regulated by the following: Performance Objectives (Immediate to long term); Team Development Stage (Rebuilding or High Performance Ready); Playing Philosophy (A Specific Competitive National Style of Play); Global Competitive Trends; Variables (Players’ Form, Injuries etc.). Following the approval of the policy and its time frame by all those involved, it is only the national coach who is responsible for the selection of players and full implementation of the preparation plan. If the policy was competently, objectively and honestly constructed, then the foundation for players’ selection, type of national football style and performance would be solid and lasting. SAFCA is of the view that the current debates on the selection of players are because the set up and process explained in this media statement is not reflected in the criteria. For example, to build a team that has the mandate of qualifying to the semi-finals of the 2022 FIFA World Cup; then the immediate performance objective (AFCON) has to be linked with Vision 2022. This is imperative and non-debatable. The time factor in developing the players and the type of successful football for 2022 has a decisive significance. No genuine football technician will would ignore the fact that the process of building performance standards for a national team to qualify for the semi-finals at the World Cup will take 8-10 years without exception.“

2015 Cosafa Cup Player of the Tournament, Namibia midfielder Wangu ‘Baptista’ Gome, has joined Bidvest Wits. Wits officials have confirmed that Gome has signed with the club for this season after excelling at the regional tournament three months ago.  The 22-year-old has been playing for Civics FC in the Namibian Premier League. He was born to an Angolan father in Windhoek, Namibia.

The Tunisian Under-23 side were able to level matters with South Africa following a 2-1 victory in their second friendly played at the Stade Olympique Elmenzah on Monday afternoon. The duo had locked horns just three days prior, with the South Africans ending the match as resounding 4-0 winners. However, the hosts who were out to avenge Friday’s loss got off to the perfect start, opening their account just two minutes into the game via set piece. The two matches played provided ideal preparation for both teams who are participating in this year’s 8 Nations tournament in Senegal, kicking off in November.

SA U23: February, Macheke, Ledwaba, Makhele, Farmer, Nel, Dolly (c), Phiri, Mothiba, M. Masuku, Shozi
Subs: Goss, Ngqobe, Mekoa, Dube, Moerane, Zuma, Patel, Ntshangase

Orlando Pirates have appointed a new fitness coach in Warren Engelbrecht, who will take over from Brazilian and ex-Moroka Swallows trainer Japhet Borges. Borges and his compatriot, goalkeeper coach Alexandre Revoredo, parted ways with Bucs after their contracts expired at the end of last season. Engelbrecht is a University of Stellenbosch graduate and has previously worked with Banyana Banyana, Ajax Cape Town as well as a number of Olympic and Paralympic athletes. Pirates coach Eric Tinkler says he is pleased with the appointment of Engelbrecht, whom he previously met at a KNVB coaching course. “I met him at a KNVB instructor’s course some time ago and I’ve known him since then. He’s really good at what he does, and I like the way he works,” Tinkler said. “One thing in particular that I like about him is that everything he does is football specific – even stuff like aerobics is done with a ball.”

Orlando Pirates have loaned out striker Tebogo Masaole to big-spending NFD club Royal Eagles for the rest of the season. The 25-year-old spent last season on loan at Golden Arrows and helped them become First Division champions by scoring seven goals, including a hat-trick against Baroka FC and a brace against Black Leopards. Masaole reveals he has now been loaned to Eagles, another club looking to win Absa Premiership promotion, following his successful season-long spell with Abafana Bes’thende. “I’m at Royal Eagles now and I was on loan last season at Golden Arrows,” Masaole said. “I still have a contract with Pirates and they have loaned me now to Eagles. I just arrived after the deal was done on the last day of the transfer window. And maybe by next week I will be playing my first game for the club.” Eagles have made some high-profile signings in Katlego Mphela and Dominic Isaacs as they look to launch a serious bid for promotion this season. Masaole joins three other players who are on loan at Eagles from Pirates, namely Siyanda Ngubo, Letsi Koapeng and Masaelo Seanego, while former Sea Robbers midfielder Khethokwakhe Masuku has also joined the club. The Buccaneers have recently loaned out Mwape Musonda, Philani Zikalala and  Gladwin Shitolo to Arrows while Mbongeni Mzimela is at Eagles’ neighbours AmaZulu.

Mpumalanga Black Aces are set to sign Liberian defender Dirkir Glay. Glay, who was on trial at Aces, will return to South Africa this week after doing duty in his country's 1-0 victory over Tunisia in an Africa Cup of Nations qualifier on the weekend. AmaZayoni coach Muhsin Ertugral confirmed he is expecting a Liberian to join his team but refused to name the player. The Absa Premiership leaders last month recruited Glay's compatriot Kpah Sherman on a three-year deal.

Former South Africa U-23 midfielder Cyril Zuma passed away in his hometown Ntuzuma yesterday after he was in a coma after being struck by a car four weeks ago. The 30-year-old captained the national U-23 team under Steve Komphela, while he also played for Maritzburg United, Moroka Swallows, City Pillars and Mpumalanga Black Aces. 'Qga', as he was known in football circles, was highly talented but his career never reached its true potential due to off-field issues. Zuma's former representative Mike Makaab, of Prosport International, conveyed his condolences to Zuma's family. "Cyril Zuma, I looked after him sometime ago," Makaab said. "Let me tell you, he was a super talented player and unfortunately he never quite realised his full potential because I don't think he was serious about his career. But without a doubt, a really, really talented player and a good person. To his family, I'm sorry about the loss and we all know that he is in a better place and may his soul rest in peace and may God give the family the strength, courage in this difficult time."

Tickets have gone on sale for the MTN8 Final between holders Kaizer Chiefs and Ajax Cape Town at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on September 19. Tickets are available at Computicket and Shoprite, selling at R80 (West stand) and R40 (for the rest of the stadium). The match will start at 15h00 in Port Elizabeth.

Kaizer Chiefs trialist Dean Jones is determined to impress the club's management. The Cape Town-born centre-back will start a month-long assessment with Chiefs in October as part of the Nedbank Cup Ke Yona Draft. Jones, who played for Salt River Blackpool in the Castle League, was in the Ke Yona team that lost 2-0 to Mamelodi Sundowns in Atteridgeville on Sunday. “I was emotional when selected,” Jones is quoted as saying on Amakhosi's website. “I always wished to be in the limelight one day and here I am. Kaizer Chiefs is a big club, very huge, it is a giant. It is an immense responsibility to wear the gold and black jersey. However, I have always thought that one day my chance would come and now it has arrived.” The 21-year-old added: “I’m ready to adapt to the requirements at Chiefs.”