Jonty Mark
Football Editor
3 minute read
4 Dec 2019
12:57 pm

Chiefs, Pirates and Sundowns – which new signings have shone?

Jonty Mark

It's been a fantastic start to the season for Kaizer Chiefs who are ten points clear at the top of the Absa Premiership, and, to some extent, for Mamelodi Sundowns, who are in the Telkom Knockout final and in the group stages of the Caf Champions League.

Kaizer Chiefs striker Samir Nurković.

Orlando Pirates have had a miserable time, on the other hand, but still have players that have done well since coming into the side this season.

READ MORE: No Christmas break at Chiefs. 

READ MORE: Pirates getting up to speed. 

READ MORE: Rugby off-season ideal for games at Loftus – Pitso.

We take a look at the players who have sparkled since joining Chiefs, Pirates and Sundowns at the beginning of this season.

Kaizer Chiefs

Samir Nurkovic

Eyebrows were raised when Chiefs brought in Nurkovic, an unknown 27 year-old Serbian, though the striker had come off an excellent season in the Slovakian second division with Komalmo. But Nurkovic has slotted into the Chiefs team perfectly, a number nine who can both link the play and hit the back of the net, as Amakhosi have surged to the top of the Absa Premiership. He already has six goals in all competitions this season, forming a very dangerous attacking trio with Leonardo Castro and Khama Billiat.

Samir Nurkovic. Pic: Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix)

Kearyn Baccus

Durban-born Australian Kearyn Baccus has impressed so much for Kaizer Chiefs this season, that Bafana Bafana head coach Molefi Ntseki is already talking about bringing him into the national team. Baccus has given Amakhosi extra class in central midfield this campaign, and already has a goal and two assists to his name in the Absa Premiership.

Kearyn Baccus. Pic: Gavin Barker/BackpagePix

Orlando Pirates

Tshegofatso Mabasa

Rulani Mokwena has been much-criticised since taking over at Pirates from Milutin Sredojevic, but one young striker that the  Pirates coach must certainly get credit for unleashing is Tshegofatso Mabasa. The 23 year-old joined the Buccaneers this season from Bloemfontein Celtic, and already has six goals in ten league appearances, including a candidate for goal of the season in a 4-3 defeat by Bidvest Wits.

Tshegofatso Mabasa. Pic: Gallo Images

Gabadinho Mhango

Mhango had a fairly slow start to his Pirates career, after coming in from Bidvest Wits this season, though he did net in the Buccaneers’ season opener against Bloemfontein Celtic, a 3-1. The Malawian striker then played in consecutive goalless draws and was relegated to the bench for a time by Mokwena. Mhango found form in November to net in both of his first two Soweto derbies, though in both games, in the Telkom Knockout and the Absa Premiership, Kaizer Chiefs got the better of Pirates.

Gabadinho Mhango. Pic: Gavin Barker/BackpagePix

Mamelodi Sundowns

Mauricio Affonso

Pitso Mosimane hasn’t changed his squad up much this season, but one man who has come on board to fine effect is Uruguayan striker Mauricio Affonso. Injury meant Affonso had to wait a while to make his debut, though he did come off the bench to net his first goal at the end of September in an 11-1 Caf Champions League win over Cote D’or. The following month, Affonso also netted on his domestic debut, coming off the bench to head in Sundowns’ fifth goal in a 5-0 win over AmaZulu, before netting the winner in a league game against Highlands Park a few days later. Affonso also scored for Sundowns on Saturday as they beat Petro de Luanda 3-0, and has already proved a far better buy for Masandawana than Jeremy Brockie ever did.

Mauricio Affonso. Pic: BackpagePix


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