Leonardo Castro is expected back in the country on Saturday, his agent has said, pouring cold water on reports that the Colombian striker could potentially dump his new club Kaizer Chiefs for Amiens in France.
Amakhosi supporters went hysterical on Tuesday when Castro, signed by Chiefs from Mamelodi Sundowns six months before his contract expired, was linked with a move to the Ligue 1 outfit, who also have Bafana’s Bongani Zungu on their books.
But Joao Betancourt, his agent, has offered some clarity.
“The Amiens report is about who should replace (Lacina) Traoré now that he is leaving,” he responded via a text message. “And Castro is waiting for his new work permit under Kaizer Chiefs, so he will arrive on January 6.”
Panic set in for Chiefs fans when the article in one of the French newspapers seemed to suggest their new forward was set to ditch a return to the PSL in favour of moving to Europe. Castro has had a tough time over the past several months – traveling back and forth between South Africa and his native country Colombia to visit his family.
It is shortly after his sale to Chiefs was confirmed last month that Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane said that personal issues had been the contributing factor to the players’ lack of game time and, ultimately, his desire to leave.
Prior to moving on, Castro had managed just three appearances in all competitions at Sundowns this season – but overall his return was impressive over a period of a little over two seasons, scoring 15 goals in 35 matches to help Sundowns win the Absa Premiership in 2016, the same year they clinched the CAF Champions League.
With Castro only arriving on Saturday, he will miss the crunch fixture away to SuperSport United in Nelspruit and possibly the following game against Polokwane City a week later, depending on his match fitness.