'Brazilians' are coming!

HARARE - South African football giants Mamelodi Sundowns will play Dynamos, Highlanders and CAPS United on a month-end tour of Zimbabwe.

Sundowns’ technical director Trott Moloto jetted into Harare yesterday for meetings with Dynamos and CAPS United officials.

Today, Moloto is expected in Bulawayo to hold talks with Bosso representatives.

According to the former Bafana Bafana coach, The Brazilians will arrive in Bulawayo on January 30 and will take on Highlanders at Barbourfields Stadium on the same day.

Pitso Mosimane and his charges will then travel to Harare for a clash with Makepekepe at Rufaro Stadium on February 1.

The Pretoria-based side will conclude their five-day tour of the country with a match against Zimbabwe champions Dynamos on February 3 at Rufaro.

“We felt that as Sundowns we needed to establish a relationship with Zimbabwean teams,” Moloto told reporters at Harare International Airport yesterday.

“Sundowns is what it is because of the strong players that are coming from Zimbabwe. It’s not only Sundowns, but many clubs in South Africa have players from Zimbabwe. Just look at how many Zimbabweans are at Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates and it’s the same with the university teams, Wits and Pretoria, as well as at AmaZulu.

“We want to appreciate this relationship with Zimbabwean football and help it go forward. We want a situation where we are able to request more players from Zimbabwe to come through to South Africa.”

Sundowns, owned by mining mogul and billionaire Patrice Motsepe, has a long history with Zimbabwean players.

Chloorkop is currently home to Zimbabwe internationals Nyasha Mushekwi, Lionel Mtizwa, Esrom Nyandoro and Method Mwanjali. Peter Ndlovu and Simba Sithole have also turned out for Bafana Bastyle.

Another Zimbabwean, Ian Gorowa, also had a coaching stint with the club and led them to a second place league finish in the 2009-10 season.

The Super Diski has taken an extended mid-season break to allow South Africa to host the 2013 African Nations Cup finals, which start on Saturday.

Moloto added: “We also want to prepare ourselves ahead of the resumption of the South African league. As you know, we have a game against Kaizer Chiefs on February 12 and these three games will help us prepare."

“We also want to help Dynamos prepare for the Champions League. Dynamos have won the championship twice in Zimbabwe in two years and will be representing Southern Africa in the Champions League. So we want to honour them by giving them this opportunity of a friendly. When they win the Champions League they will be able to say that they played Sundowns during their preparations and it helped them lift the cup.”

Dynamos vice chairperson Webster Chikengezha said: “Basically what we have agreed is that Sundowns are going to come and they have said they will meet most of their costs. Some of the gate takings will help in terms of their accommodation but they are not demanding anything from us.

“They also want to help Dynamos prepare for the Champions League. This game will be very helpful as you know that we have been looking forward to it for some time and we tried other clubs in Africa but they were not forthcoming.

“We are so indebted to Sundowns, I think they are going to give us a lot of good practice.”

CAPS United CEO Max Mironga was also delighted by the development.

“First and foremost, we are very grateful to be part of this tournament as you know that we have a long lasting relationship with Sundowns,” said Mironga.

 “As you know last season we didn’t do well and we hope this time around, with the introduction of several youngsters, Sundowns will give us a very good preparation.”

United spent the greater part of last season in the lower half of the standings as they struggled for form under Northern Irishman Sean Connor.

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