SA clubs shun Zimbos

HARARE – In previous years, South African clubs would scramble to get talent from the Zimbabwean market but it seems it’s not the case this time around.

So far only two deals have been completed between Super Diski clubs and their counterparts from the Castle Lager Premiership.

After a deal stalled in June, FC Platinum midfielder Gerald Takwara finally completed his move to Ajax Cape Town.

Takwara was supposed to have joined the Urban Warriors last year after impressing for the Warriors at the 2017 Cosafa Castle Cup but the two clubs could not agree on a fee.

The midfielder, however, finally made the move across the Limpopo when he flew out to Cape Town towards the end of last year.

What is left for the midfield enforcer is to cement his place in new coach Muhsin Ertugral’s starting XI.

The Urban Warriors are in danger of relegation as they currently sit in 15th place on the log with a paltry 13 points from 14 matches.

The other completed transfer between Zimbabwean and South African clubs is that of former CAPS United striker Dominic Chungwa, who moved to Polokwane City.

Chungwa was bound to attract interest from Mzansi clubs after winning the 2017 Castle Lager Premiership Golden Boot with 17 goals.

Local player agent George Deda attributed the reduced number of Zimbabwean players moving to Mzansi to the fact that other African leagues are now rivalling the Super Diski’s financial muscle.

“South African clubs these days no longer have a lot of money like what they used to have in the past,” Deda said.

“It now makes sense for players to look for other markets like Zambia, Tanzania and North Africa.

“The majority of our players who are moving to South Africa are going to earn between R30 000 and R50 000 and if you convert that to US dollars it’s not a lot of money.

“South African clubs do not offer accommodation and winning bonuses for their players so you find that surviving on the salary alone is no longer enough.”

Deda encouraged local players to look for other markets across Africa as it was no longer lucrative to seek moves to the Super Diski. 

“Clubs in Zambia are offering their players at least $6 000 and above which is a lot of money compared to what players are getting in South Africa,” he said. 

“Most of our players who are now going to South Africa are desperate to make foreign moves but economically it does not make sense.

“Look at Rainford Kalaba at TP Mazembe; he’s probably the highest paid player on the continent and he is living pretty.

“It’s time for our local players to look elsewhere because they need to make hay whilst the sun is still shining. Football is a very short career and you need to make enough money to last you after retiring.”            

Meanwhile, Zimbabwean striker Kingston Nkhatha’s future at SuperSport United is no longer guaranteed because of a lack of game time.

The former Kaizer Chiefs player is facing an uncertain future as his contract with the club is set to expire at the end of the current campaign.

Nkhatha has been struggling for game time since Eric Tinkler arrived at the club, a sign that he might not be part of his plans.

He has made four appearances in all competitions, making only one start in an Absa Premiership clash against Chippa United.

“At the moment, I can’t comment on that, I’m not sure (about Nkhatha’s future),” Tinkler told KickOff recently.

Tinkler said he is not aware of the rumoured interest from Cape Town City for the striker, though he says as a club they won’t stand in his way if that was to happen.

“That’s news to me (that he has attracted interest). He is still part of the squad. Obviously, we are not going to stand in the way of that happening,” he said.

Tinkler refused to give reason for the player’s lack of game time since he took over as a coach.

“No, I’m not going to comment on that,” he said.

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