The January signings of Aubrey Ngoma and now Jeremy Brockie, both after lengthy transfer sagas, provide further proof of this.
Both Cape Town City and SuperSport United put up a fight over Ngoma and Brockie, clearly eager to hold on to star talents at their respective sides. In the end, however, both have been added to Pitso Mosimane’s attacking ranks, in what has to be a huge boost for the team ahead of the 2018 Caf Champions League and the last months of their attempt to win back the Absa Premiership.
It remains to be seen if Ngoma’s arrival spells the end of a trophy-laden time at Sundowns for Khama Billiat. The Zimbabwean forward has been the subject of transfer speculation at Masandawana for some time, but a summer exit did not happen, and there are only a couple of weeks now for him to seal a January move. Sundowns owner Patrice Motsepe certainly has the billions not to worry if Billiat ends up leaving for free when his contract runs out at the end of the current campaign.
Brockie is basically a direct replacement for Leonardo Castro, who has gone to Chiefs, and provides Sundowns with a target man that they badly need in their ranks, if they are to launch a trophy assault on all fronts.
It will be fascinating to see how Brockie fits into the Sundowns set up, and how he links up with the likes of Themba Zwane, Percy Tau and Sibusiso Vilakazi. A lack of a clinical finisher, or a “sniper” as is Brockie’s nickname, has certainly affected Sundowns as they have lost three of their last four league games, with an abundance of chances going to waste.
Brockie could be the man to solve that, he was certainly brilliant in spells at Matsatsantsa, though he will have to get his focus back quickly after drifting towards the end of his time at SuperSport. The New Zealander was instrumental in SuperSport’s run to the 2017 Caf Confederation Cup final, but he managed just one league goal for them this season, and his head was clearly elsewhere in what proved to be his final match for the club, at Bidvest Wits last week.
Whether he hits the ground running now could be key in whether Sundowns resume control of a title race they had threatened to dominate, but that now looks wide open again. Brockie will certainly be happy, at 30 years old, to have sealed what is sure to be a lucrative deal, quite possibly his last in the Premier Soccer League. Now he must repay the faith Mosimane has shown in him.
This has, meanwhile, been the craziest, busiest January transfer window I have witnessed in the PSL, and I am expecting many more deals to get over the line before it all closes down. It is good to see, after many a January window that has shut with barely a whimper.
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