The Siya crew reported yesterday of a possible loophole for Kaizer Chiefs to register free agents this season despite their FIFA ban being upheld.
But the SA Football Association (SAFA) has now offered its understanding of what appears to be an ambiguous directive on players who are out of contract.
Chiefs have been banned by the world football governing body for two successive transfer windows and are unable to register new players until 1 July 2021.
However, the club had been hedging their bets after appealing to the Court of Arbitration (CAS) for Sport to have the sanction reversed.
The appeal was dismissed on Tuesday.
Indications are that Amakhosi were contemplating registering free agents on 1 March 2021, which is when they would have served the full FIFA ban.
The NSL handbook does allow for players out of contract to be registered outside the window, but SAFA has since explained to the Siya crew why this can't apply to Chiefs.
“No, they cannot register free agents,” said SAFA chief executive officer Tebogo Motlanthe.
“If they were able to, it would mean the FIFA ban is redundant. It means the club would have been able to identify targets and only register them after the two transfer windows.”
Chiefs may now have to rethink their strategy given there are three players – Brandon Petersen, Sifiso Hlanti and Phathutshedzo Nange – who are understood to have been offered employment contracts in the hope of registering them later.
The trio are currently free agents and had been training with Chiefs. On Thursday morning coach Gavin Hunt confirmed to the media that Petersen, Hlanti and Nange could go out on loan, which suggests Amakhosi had already signed them.
Check out the players Chiefs were targetting this season...