Promising defender Keegan Allan has explained why he turned down a five-year deal at Mamelodi Sundowns to start a new chapter with University of Pretoria in the GladAfrica Championship.
Tuks confirmed Allan as one of their new signings for the upcoming season, after the player’s contract with Sundowns expired at the end of June. Allan played for Sundowns’ Diski Challenge side.
“The club did offer a new five-year deal, but for my personal development, it was to get as much game time as possible. There was an option to sign a new deal with Sundowns, I have no reason to hide that, and they were most probably going to send me out on loan. I think I wanted to be somewhere I can settle and get as much game time as possible. There was a new deal, but I just decided to sign with Tuks,” Allan tells the Siya crew.
“Often with young centre backs, especially at a big club like Sundowns, the first thing they look at is experience, especially in that position. Even looking at (Motjeka) Madisha – may he rest in peace. He was on loan first at Highlands Park before he broke through permanently. And even then, it took him a while to break through. It’s not easy being a centre-back that’s young, especially from the academy. When you break through, you have all the new signings that they bring in and they are already experienced there. That’s expected at a big club like Sundowns that challenges to win everything. I can’t be upset with anything.”
The 20-year-old says he enjoyed his time at Sundowns and gave credit to the coaches for improving his game.
“I was at Sundowns for about three-and-a-half to four years. I enjoyed my time there. They signed me into the MDC team and I got a lot of experience, both the MDC and first team. I wouldn’t be the player I am were it not for Sundowns. I am extremely grateful for what they have done, from coach Surprise (Moriri), to coach Godfrey (Sapula), to coach David (Notoane) and coach Shawn Bishop. Unfortunately, it did not end up with me being a permanent first team fixture, but that’s part of football. I have lots of good memories there.”
Now at Tuks, he will be hoping to play a key role and inspire them to promotion.
“It’s new a good club and a good group of players. The coach is very good and there is a good technical team, so I am very excited and I am looking forward to the season. It’s going to be a new set-up and new challenges, but I am excited.”