Chiefs and Wits splurge on stars
KAIZER Chiefs and Wits are expected to lead the charge in the final days of the transfer market as the window on major deals is set to close on Friday afternoon.
Chiefs confirmed yesterday the signing of Bafana Bafana left-back Tsepo Masilela from Maccabi Haifa, and are now in the market for an emergency centre-back to replace the injured Morgan Gould, who is out for the next six months after just a handful of games for his new club.
Former Ajax Cape Town and Mamelodi Sundowns defender Eduardo Ferreira is a favourite to get a short-term contract offer, but Amakhosi have also made inquiries overseas about getting Valery Nahayo back after a single season in Belgium.
Wits, who have already made a major impact in the market over the last two months, have added Bafana midfielder Mzikayise Mashaba to their squad in the last 24 hours, and will likely make a move for Ajax striker Thembinkosi Fanteni.
Negotiations over Fanteni's deal were concluded yesterday as the club looks to splash out a combined R4-million on both players.
Masilela has been the subject of extensive talks between Chiefs and agents in recent days, but the bosses at Naturena headquarters did a lot of soul-searching before coughing up between R5-million and R6-million, according to insiders.
Masilela's talent is not in dispute but the player does have a reputation for injury - one of the main reasons his Israeli club is eager to offload him.
Chiefs splashed out a South African record of R6-million for Gould, only for the player to tear his Achilles tendon and be condemned to the sidelines at least until the second half of the season.
Ferreira left South Africa last December when his contract was cut short at Sundowns. He had little playing time after suffering from persistent knee complaints.
But he has since regained fitness in a spell at America Cali in Colombia and is available to Chiefs now that he is out of contract.
Nahayo had been lined up to return to South Africa with Supersport United last month, but the deal fell through. Gavin Hunt instead bought the tall Senegal centre-back Mor Diouf.
Hunt said at the weekend he was still looking for more players despite his side's bright start to the season, which includes reaching the final of the MTN8.
Mashaba has been a target for Wits for several months but only joins after forcing the hand of Free State Stars.
Stars have now sold the majority of the talent that helped them secure a top-six finish last season.
Fanteni is a surprise late swoop as the ambitious Wits seek an established finisher.
Mato Madlala said her struggling Golden Arrows team are also in the market for at least two major signings before the end of Friday.
Black Leopards, Maritzburg United and new boys Pretoria University said they are all set for the season.