Five players that Kaizer Chiefs, Stuart Baxter should sign to reclaim glory
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DURBAN - There is no doubt that Stuart Baxter will be aiming to challenge for every trophy on offer as Kaizer Chiefs coach next season.
After poor runs in the Premiership and Nedbank Cup last term, it is evident that Amakhosi need to rope in new talent if they want to improve their performances.
The following are five players that they should look to rope in as they look to re-establish themselves as giants of South African football:
Bongokuhle Hlongwane (Maritzburg United)
Bongokuhle Hlongwane is a talented player who looks likely to leave Maritzburg United this off-season. The 21-year-old was a nominee for the Premiership's Young Player of the Year award last season. He provided good support to Thabiso Kutumela and helped Maritzburg to avoid relegation.
The Bafana Bafana international is far from a finished product and still has flaws in his game. However, he could prove to be a good long-term investment for the Soweto giants. He is a confident player who is eager to learn and will get better with age.
Sifiso Mlungwana (Golden Arrows)
Bruce Bvuma has established himself as Chiefs' undisputed first-choice goalkeeper. At a club like Chiefs, he should be provided with strong competition. While the once invincible Itumeleng Khune can be a good source of mentorship to Bvuma, he is a shadow of the keeper he once was. It is unlikely that Khune will be able to challenge Bvuma for his role anytime soon, due to his declining reflexes.
Sifiso Mlungwana is one of the best up-and-coming keepers in SA football and was a hero for a Golden Arrows team that surpassed expectations by finishing fourth in the league last season.
Tabiso Kutumela (Maritzburg United)
Out of the four SA players who scored more than 10 goals in the league last season, Tabiso Kutumela was the only one under 30. He is a mature player and could be a contender for the Golden Boot award if surrounded by better teammates than he was when he played for Maritzburg United last season.
At 27-years-old, Kutumela is now at the peak of his powers. Chiefs could do with his firepower.
Njabulo Ngcobo (Moroka Swallows)
The 27-year-old was one of the best defenders in the league last season and a big reason behind why Brandon Truter's charges managed to surpass the expectations of many last season.
Njabulo Ngcobo has the ability to read and break down the attacks of opposition players. He is a hard-working player and like Kutumela, is also now in the prime so Chiefs can benefit from his defensive prowess.
Tapelo Xoki (AmaZulu)
The 26-year-old AmaZulu centre back was arguably one of the most improved players in the league last season.
Not only did he improve on his defensive output, but he also developed the key ability to be an attacking threat at vital moments of the game for AmaZulu.
Tapelo Xoki's ability to take and score from set-pieces is something that could benefit Chiefs. However, luring him could be a challenge given that the future currently looks bright for AmaZulu under coach Benni McCarthy.