‘Different Kaizer Chiefs in 2021’ – SuperSport United’s Matthews expects Soweto giants to spend big

The experienced football administrator feels that Sundowns and Pirates are streets ahead of Amakhosi in terms of squad strength

SuperSport United chief executive officer Stan Matthews believes that Kaizer Chiefs will be among the big spenders during the 2021 South African winter transfer window.

Amakhosi have been inactive in the current transfer window after failing to overturn a two-window transfer ban imposed on them by Fifa for signing Madagascar international Andriamirado ‘Dax” Andrianarimanana illegally. 

Chiefs can only sign players from July 2021 and their Gauteng rivals Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates have strengthened their squads with new signings and the two giants are expected to mount a serious challenge for the PSL title this term. 

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“I said to you guys in our first Zoom meeting, three clubs would come out of this [pandemic] stronger,” Matthews said when speaking to the South African Football Journalists Association on Friday.

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“I didn’t factor in Chiefs’ transfer ban, but you can see from the players they will have next season, that are currently plying their trade for other clubs, for a year to have and hold, it will be a different Chiefs in July 2021. I am certain of it. Sundowns and Pirates are streets ahead in terms of squad strength.”

AmaZulu FC have been able to make big signings such as Siphiwe Tshabalala, Luvuyo Memela and Augustine Mulenga after the club was purchased by Durban-based businessman Sandile Zungu.

While Swallows FC have been amongst the busiest clubs in the transfer market after securing promotion from the National First Division (NFD) to the PSL. 

“AmaZulu [with a new owner] have fresh momentum and Swallows have been signing, but besides that, you don’t see too much,” Matthews continued. 

SuperSport signed Mpho Mathebula and Keenan Phillips from the now-defunct Bidvest Wits, former Polokwane City goalkeeper George Chigova, ex-Stellenbosch FC marksman Iqraam Rayners and Lucky Mohomi, who joined Matsatsantsa from Mamelodi Sundowns.

Matthews revealed that the Tshwane giants are highly unlikely to make any further signings and he also explained why Wits and Highlands Park sold their PSL statuses ahead of the current campaign.

“There will be no more activity from SuperSport and obviously it is a bit of a knock, especially for the fans in what is perceived to be a bit of a quiet window,” he added.

“But we have a different perspective in terms of where we are as a club. We are proud of every member of staff in our club received a full salary and that there were no retrenchments.

“This is an industry where Wits and Highlands Park looked and said it was no longer viable (to have a club). Being emotional in the transfer market does happen and can get you in a situation where the numbers don’t make sense.

“We have had to say ‘hang on a second, we have preserved everyone through this crisis and there may be a second wave (of the coronavirus).’ We have to hold as much as we have without being too risky.”

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