To be fair, this is more of a fun debate than one leaving any particular side with much to crow about, because it is titles that matter and not big-money signings, though the hysteria that surrounds transfer windows, particularly in England, would often indicate otherwise.
But still, who said there was anything wrong with having some fun? On the immediate surface, Mamelodi Sundowns have done extremely well to get Emiliano Tade from AmaZulu. The Argentinian made an immediate impact with a superbly taken goal in the Champions League win over ASEC Mimosas on Friday. It already looks like Tade might well be a better option for Masandawana than Toni Silva, who launched a public tirade against Pitso Mosimane after leaving Sundowns. That might have had more credibility if Silva did not have a reputation for hopping between clubs with unerring regularity.
One could argue, however, that AmaZulu have actually done better out of the deal with Sundowns, with Bongi Ntuli going to them from the Brazilians on a permanent basis, and whatever money they made from the Tade transfer also seemingly enabling them to buy Talent Chawapiwa from Baroka FC. If both can do well, it could be that AmaZulu are the ones smiling at the end of the season.
Kaizer Chiefs eventually decided to get themselves a goalkeeper, with Daniel Akpeyi coming in, while they also moved forward the purchase of Reeve Frosler from Bidvest Wits. Frosler is a fine young player who is perhaps unlucky to find himself sidelined at the Clever Boys, but it remains to be seen if Akpeyi will be any better than Chiefs’ current ‘keepers, in the absence of the injured Itumeleng Khune.
Bidvest Wits did a lot of business, but most of it was in tying down players to pre-contracts, with only Fagrie Lakay’s moved forward so he can play for the Clever Boys this season.
In return, Mxolisi Machupu moved to SuperSport, while they also signed George Lebese on loan from Mamelodi Sundowns. Lebese looks like one of those boom or bust signings, who could prove a revelation after clearly having an awful time at Sundowns, but could also simply continue with the malaise.
Chippa United’s form has improved under Clinton Larsen, and they have done some serious player exchanging in the window, Gladwin Shitolo and Phetso Maphanga the latest two loan players from Orlando Pirates, while William Twala could also prove an inspired signing.
Cape Town City have done well to bring in Kermit Erasmus, but it remains to be seen how much they suffer from losing Ayanda Patosi, a last-minute departure for Iran.
Orlando Pirates haven’t done any incoming business, but ironically it could be that they are the ones who move most seamlessly into the next few months, as January signings often take time to settle.
It will be interesting, meanwhile, to see how Zimbabwean striker Charlton Mashumba does at Polokwane City.
So, who has won the window? Well, to be honest it is hard to tell, but the signing of the transfer window, without doubt, is Tade. If he can continue to link well with Sundowns’ other attacking players it could well be that he is the final piece that will deliver yet another Absa Premiership title to Choorklop.
All that remains is for me to encourage readers to enter the Phakaaathi Private Fantasy League, by following the rules on Page 7, for a chance to win some great monthly prizes. Also don’t forget to enter our Phakaaathi Player-of-the-Month competition, with the story on Page 7, and the advert on Page 9.
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