Whatever the answer to that maybe, it will certainly piss off Mamelodi Sundowns supporters and might make them turn their back on Pitso Mosimane for poaching arguably the team's most talented players, Themba Zwane and Gaston Sirino.
Mosimane is understood to be on a mission to recruit the duo to his Al Ahly side to bolster his squad for next season’s Caf Champions League. If reports are anything to go by, Sirino has been offered a multi-million Rand deal to move up North and to fuel these rumours, the Uruguayan has not played much this season, but Downs insist that his absence is down to injury.
It could be that the coaching trio of Manqoba Mngqithi, Rhulani Mokwena and Steve Komphela, otherwise known as their biblical reference of Meshach, Shadrach and Abednego, are already planning for life without the influential player.
In Zwane’s case, he reportedly did not show any interest in joining his former coach at The Club of the Century, but rumour has it that Ahly have tabled another offer to lure “Mshishi” to the Egyptian giants. If Downs only let go of Zwane in January, the 2020/21 Champions League season will be underway and Zwane being an influential figure at Masandawana, he will certainly be in the 30-man squad, meaning AAhly won’t be able to register him in their Champions League squad – a player is, “in principle only eligible to play for one and the same club in the Caf inter-clubs competitions”, as stipulated in Rule V, Section 10 of the Caf Rule Book on the registration and qualification of players.
The same rule does, however, suggest that Zwane would be eligible to play for Ahly in the continent’s premium club competition if he is not fielded by the Brazilians, or, if Sundowns loan him to the club and Ahly register him in the second registration period from November 6 to 19, 2020 – it is quite tricky.
Given Ahly’s financial muscle, they can bully their way into getting the signatures of the pair, but it is worth noting that the Egyptian transfer window was shut on November 4. In the same breath, players could always be released by their clubs and get picked up as free agents.
It then begs the question; will Sundowns’ attack ever be the same without those two? With Sibusiso Vilakazi constantly in the casualty room, can the likes of Hashim Domingo, Sphelele Mkhulise, Lebogang Maboe and company, step up to lead in the creative department, or will this force Sundowns’ scouts to crisscross from stadium to stadium trying to find another Sirino or Zwane?
The duo contributed handsomely to Sundowns’ goal tally last season, both in goals scored and assists, helping the team to a domestic treble and to winning the league three times in a row. Zwane even went on to claim top prizes at the Premier Soccer League awards.
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