The Siya crew has it on good authority that Mamelodi Sundowns had Rushine De Reuck on their sights before their most recent shopping spree.
Indications are that the Brazilians made contact with Maritzburg United twice over their willingness to sell last season’s best defender, but have been spooked by the asking price. Siya sources have informed the crew that the Team of Choice’s valuation of the player is much higher than the initial R5-million fee Sundowns may have been prepared to fork out.
Downs, according to sources, reached out to Maritzburg on two occasions during the bio-bubble in what has been described as informal talks over a potential sale. Until late last week, Sundowns had confirmed the arrival of 13 new players and none of them were centre backs, which still left the door open for further negotiations with Maritzburg for De Reuck.
But the Brazilians have since signed Brian Onyango on a three-year contract to beef up their rearguard, which casts doubt on whether they are still keen on his ex-Maritzburg teammate moving to Chloorkop this season.
Although he was unveiled by Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivhandila in his absence, Onyango was then subsequently spotted at Chloorkop, where he spent two weeks prior to being confirmed as their new signing. It seems to have been a viable option for Downs, while Maritzburg are thought to have been holding out for more than R5-million for De Reuck.
If Downs have backtracked on their interest – for now, this may be an indication that Orlando Pirates and Kaizer Chiefs would have to battle out for the player’s signature – but only the Buccaneers can sign him this season.
Amakhosi have been hit with a two-window transfer ban by FIFA and won’t be able to register new players until 1 July 2021, so that immediately rules them out. If he is not sold before then, the Glamour Boys have a shot at a later stage.
Pirates, whose interest in De Reuck was reported by the Siya crew last year, had made signing a goalkeeper and centre back the club’s top priority this season, with Richard Ofori and De Reuck, amongst others, emerging as targets.
The Buccaneers signed shot-stopper, Ofori, last month from Maritzburg and there was talk that De Reuck could partner Bafana Bafana captain Thulani Hlatshwayo in central defence, following his move from the now-defunct Bidvest Wits.
But De Reuck was tied to a long-term contract by Maritzburg just before Christmas last year, meaning that his future remains in the club’s hands and they can dictate his value, which may very well have held back any potential deal this season!
Story by @superjourno
De Reuck is in camp with Bafana and was part of the team that visited Senzo Meyiwa's burial site...