Sundowns confirm talks with Chiefs over Billiat
DURBAN – Rumours of Mamelodi Sundowns buying back Khama Billiat from Kaizer Chiefs have been given more traction by a senior Sundowns official.
After winning the Caf Champions League and three PSL titles with Sundowns, Billiat joined Amakhosi as a free agent ahead of last season and went on to become their top goalscorer, with five league goals in 26 matches, as well as a further four in nine Cup games.
The Tshwane club also saw Bafana Bafana striker, Percy Tau, departing for Europe at the same time as Billiat.
The Brazilians still went on to win the league title and made the Champions League semi-finals. But despite signing replacement strikers such as Jeremy Brockie and Emiliano Tade, and more recently, Uruguayan marksman Mauricio Affonso, it is believed that the club remain intent on adding more firepower, with Billiat on their wanted list.
Although he played for Chiefs in the season-opening Black Label Cup, Billiat has not featured in the Glamour Boys’ first two league matches, with head coach Ernst Middendorp claiming recently that the reason for the 28-year-old’s absence is an injury picked up at the Africa Cup of Nations two months ago.
Sundowns coach Pitso Mosimane has hinted at, but refused to directly address, his team’s interest in Billiat.
However, Sundowns acting general manager Yogesh Singh has now been quoted by Soccer Laduma as confirming that the Pretoria club are indeed interested in prising back the Zimbabwean forward from Chiefs.
“This is a sensitive matter, and we have mutual respect for Kaizer Chiefs, so I won’t be disclosing too much information. But what I can tell you is that we have been in ongoing discussions for some time now about Khama Billiat,” Singh admitted.
The PSL transfer window closes on 31 August.
Meanwhile, all eyes will be on Mosimane this weekend as his Sundowns team begin their quest to capture the MTN8 crown - the only trophy the coach hasn’t won during his tenure at the club.
Mosimane has always shown less interest in the competition, but Sundowns fans are known to be keen on getting their hands on the Cup to complete their dominance as the reigning kings of South African football.
The league champions will entertain Bloemfontein Celtic on Saturday at Lucas Moripe Stadium in the quarter-finals of the competition.
Mosimane joined Sundowns back in 2012. During his seven-year spell with the club, Mosimane has amassed four league titles, the Nedbank Cup, Telkom Knockout, Champions League and the Super Cup.
The MTN8 is the only Cup that has eluded Mosimane at Sundowns. He will be hoping that 2019 will be his year in the eight-team knockout competition.
The last time he lifted the trophy was in 2004 when he was coaching SuperSport United.
Minenhle Mkhize and ANA