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Wed Apr 23 12:35:17 SAST 2014

Sundowns sign a sixth striker

MAZOLA MOLEFE and KGOMOTSO SETHUSHA | 13 July, 2012 06:150 Comments
2012 IRB Junior World Champs Final: South Africa v New Zealand
Eleazar Rodgers
Image by: Luke Walker / Gallo Images

MAMELODI Sundowns, one of the richest football clubs in Africa, have riches in strikers, too.

The club yesterday signed their sixth striker, Eleazar Rodgers from relegated Santos.

Rodgers, who had been unwilling to move to Pretoria and had preferred Bidvest Wits in Johannesburg instead, made an about-turn and agreed to a four-year contract with Sundowns.

He is the second Santos player to be signed by Sundowns since the Cape Town club was relegated from the Premier League two weeks ago. Defender Wayne Arendse had earlier agreed to a five-year contract.

Rodgers joins a growing list of big-name strikers that include Katlego Mphela - the club's top scorer last season - Nyasha Mushekwi, Richard Henyekane, Simba Sithole and Edward Manqele.

Sithole joined Sundowns last season but did not play.

Manqele was recruited from Free State Stars.

Thami Sangweni, a midfielder and younger brother of Bafana defender Siyabonga Sangweni, was Sundowns' first signing in the off-season.

Rodgers said: "Mamelodi Sundowns are a big side and I know that the pressure is higher here but I wouldn't have signed for them if I was not up for the challenge. I will work very hard for my chance to play and I hope to help the team reach their goals."

He was the PSL's second-highest goal scorer last season with 12 strikes, eight behind Siyabonga Nomvethe of Moroka Swallows.

Former Sundowns coach Antonio Lopez Habas returned to PSL football yesterday when he was appointed Wits's new coach.

The Spaniard replaces Roger de Sa, who was abruptly sacked on Monday. Habas left South African football in 2010 after he was chased from the Lucas Moripe Stadium by violent Sundowns fans following a Sundowns defeat. He had been hired as an assistant to Hristo Stoichkov.

Wits are the fifth Premier League club to appoint a new coach in the off-season after Moroka Swallows, Kaizer Chiefs, Chippa United and Platinum Stars.

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