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Benni, Pienaar, Parker and The Overseas Stars To Return To Mzansi

Looking back at the best players to return from abroad

By Kyle Smith - Jul 08, 2017 10:26 AM @KyleLaduma

With the likes of Steven Pienaar and Daylon Claasen making their returns to the PSL, we take a look at the players who’ve returned to their roots and how their returns panned out.

Confirmed: Pienaar Completes PSL Move

Both Pienaar and Claasen began their careers at Ajax Cape Town, before moving on to Ajax Amsterdam and moving to Borussia Dortmund and Lierse respectively. Pienaar went on to play in the English Premier League, ending up at Sunderland and after seeing his contract expire, is now back in South Africa to play for the reigning league champions. Claasen also joined The Students after signing a contract upon the expiry of his deal with 1860 Munich.

Click through the images above to see our list of the players that made their returns to the PSL after playing abroad.

However, their return to their home country is not an uncommon trend with the likes of Benni McCarthy, Shaun Bartlett, Bernard Parker, Aaron Mokoena and a number of other stars from abroad returning to achieve success or otherwise. Examples of these players are as follows:

Benni McCarthy

After spells with the likes of Ajax Amsterdam, Celta Vigo, FC Porto, Blackburn Rovers and West Ham, the Champions League-winning striker joined Orlando Pirates in 2011, where he made 31 league appearances, scoring 10 goals and making five assists in two seasons and won a treble.

Bernard Parker

A graduate of the Transnet School of Excellence, Parker rose to prominence at Benoni Premier United (now Thanda Royal Zulu) before joining Red Star Belgrade in 2009. He went on to win the Dutch Eredivisie with FC Twente and returned to Kaizer Chiefs in 2011. In 157 league appearances for the club, he has scored 39 goals and made 25 assists and has won the Absa Premiership twice, while winning a Nedbank Cup and the PSL Golden Boot in the process.

Shaun Bartlett

The current University of Pretoria manager earned his stripes at Cape Town Spurs in the 90s, before moving to the MLS in the United States and eventually joining FC Zurich in Switzerland, where he won the Swiss Cup. He then became a fixture at English Premier League side Charlton Athletic for six years, before joining Kaizer Chiefs in 2006, where he won the Telkom Knockout and the MTN8, scoring 12 goals and making one assist in 44 league appearances. He saw out his playing days as a Bloemfontein Celtic player, but only made eight league appearances for Siwelele.

Kagisho Dikgacoi

The defensive midfielder rose to prominence at Golden Arrows and earned a move to Fulham in the Premier League. Spells at Crystal Palace and Cardiff followed but, unfortunately, he will not be looking back fondly on his spell in Britain and was eventually released by Cardiff before making his return to Arrows. He made 10 league appearances for Clinton Larsen’s team, scoring one goal.

Aaron Mokoena

The most capped footballer in Bafana Bafana’s history joined Bayer Leverkusen from Jomo Cosmos back in 1998 as a 17-year-old. Spells at Ajax Amsterdam and Genk preceded a seven-year spell in England with Blackburn Rovers and Portsmouth, where he racked up 124 Premier League appearances. In 2012, he returned to South Africa, signing with Bidvest Wits, where he made 14 appearances before hanging up his boots a year later.

Honourable mentions:

Matthew Booth - Krylya Sovetov Samara (Russia) to Mamelodi Sundowns

Mark Fish - Charlton Athletic (England) to Jomo Cosmos

Tsepo Masilela – Maccabi Haifa (Israel) to Kaizer Chiefs

Bryce Moon – Panathinaikos (Greece) to SuperSport United

Bongani Khumalo – Tottenham Hotspur (England) to SuperSport United

The New Faces At Kaizer Chiefs

What returning players do you think were the most successful when they came back to South Africa? 


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Daniel Madenza Kutumela Joined: 26 Feb 2015
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Daniel Madenza Kutumela Jul 09, 2017 04:34 PM
McCarthy,Bartlett, Mokoena and Fish
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Realydoctor10 Joined: 18 Nov 2016
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Realydoctor10 Jul 09, 2017 08:18 AM
Great expirence was on winning treble
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Geoff Stunner Joined: 06 Apr 2017
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Geoff Stunner Jul 09, 2017 08:06 AM
what's this all about????
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The_Diski_God Joined: 08 Oct 2013
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The_Diski_God Jul 08, 2017 10:24 PM
Schillo vs katsande... 22 shibobos for katsande while he eat grass....
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#bhudaza Joined: 08 Jul 2017
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#bhudaza Jul 08, 2017 03:24 PM
@Regilson o yellow ehh kaboyelo im sundowns myself BT south africa comes first so whts yo take on the players who deserted us during their prime football ?
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Regilson o yellow Joined: 03 Jul 2017
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Regilson o yellow Jul 08, 2017 02:43 PM
those who are above 30 should return to south africa those below 30 should stay abroad
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Mtsetserepa Joined: 06 Jan 2015
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Mtsetserepa Jul 08, 2017 02:39 PM
OJ and co failed. as long as they came b4 they passed 30yrs. Pinaar and co r coming to honourable retirement.
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Dangerous when provoked Joined: 27 Oct 2016
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Dangerous when provoked Jul 08, 2017 02:10 PM
@JingleBells Mosimane your language bro.
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#bhudaza Joined: 08 Jul 2017
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#bhudaza Jul 08, 2017 01:34 PM
This pienaar doesn't like south Africa I wished he stayed overseas for da rest of his life he deserted us in time of need ..unpatriotic player now hes finnished and comes here expecting warm welcome. I gues its fine tht he joined a team tht doesnt hv fans !!! Sies !!
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zedada Joined: 05 Feb 2014
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zedada Jul 08, 2017 01:12 PM
Ok
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shadae Joined: 26 Aug 2014
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shadae Jul 08, 2017 01:01 PM
Why old John is nt on de list, coz hes a bad boy
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Down_And_Out Joined: 06 Jul 2017
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Down_And_Out Jul 08, 2017 12:57 PM
lets boycott Soccer Laduma #MrDown has spoken. #SLMustFall
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chinyama Joined: 31 Aug 2016
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chinyama Jul 08, 2017 12:53 PM
dikgacoi lies cowditor
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VIPER Joined: 07 Aug 2010
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VIPER Jul 08, 2017 12:48 PM
Where's cowmalo?
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kzorog Joined: 13 Jan 2017
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kzorog Jul 08, 2017 12:42 PM
Kagiso n kaiser chiefs?
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LeCowhlohlo Joined: 07 Oct 2016
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LeCowhlohlo Jul 08, 2017 12:40 PM
An stop feeding us with allegations and speculations cause some of them end up hurting us if things didn't went according to our expectations.
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LeCowhlohlo Joined: 07 Oct 2016
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LeCowhlohlo Jul 08, 2017 12:31 PM
We want to know who is coming who is going, dig deep you find serious news eish.
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LeCowhlohlo Joined: 07 Oct 2016
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LeCowhlohlo Jul 08, 2017 12:28 PM
8 days transfer window opened but clubs are quiet, we are hungry about news please not this.
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kdowns Joined: 18 Aug 2015
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kdowns Jul 08, 2017 12:21 PM
Mxxxxxxxxxxxxm
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the great khosiological Joined: 03 Aug 2011
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the great khosiological Jul 08, 2017 12:19 PM
Cowditor did u omitted mtn8 accolade from Parker's accolades by mistake?

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