Mamelodi Sundowns plan to hijack rivals Kaizer Chiefs’ talks to sign a player both clubs believe has great potential, the Siya crew can disclose.
Amakhosi had emerged as favourites to sign defender Njabulo Ngcobo a few weeks ago from Swallows, but they now have serious competition from Sundowns, who are known to always get what they want because they have the financial muscle.
Chiefs are gearing up for a squad overhaul at Naturena and Ngcobo is one of the players the club has identified as a priority target along with his teammate, striker Ruzaigh Gamildien, for next season when their FIFA ban is lifted.
There’s definitely room for Ngcobo at Amakhosi with at least 10 players out of contract in June and several others likely to be considered surplus to requirements.
So football manager Bobby Motaung and coach Gavin Hunt – if he is still the head coach – will have a busy off season.
It’s a slightly different story at Downs – they were able to sign 15 players this season, though the central defence area apparently remains a concern.
Ngcobo, if Downs win the race for his signature, would have a tough contest (see gallery of other central defenders at Chloorkop) to nail down a regular spot, but at his age, he would no doubt have some longevity.
Ngcobo turns 27 in May.
In a tussle of this nature, the selling club, in this case Swallows, still have the final say given that Ngcobo has a long-term contract with the Dube Birds and it will depend on the offer put on the table for a final call on his next destination.
The player’s decision on where he would prefer to play his football next season could also be a determining factor – and both Chiefs and Sundowns would be in a position to offer Swallows any of their fringe players in exchange.
Story by @superjourno