Bidvest Wits striker James Keene gestures during a Premiership match. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
Bidvest Wits striker James Keene gestures during a Premiership match. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
Evans Rusike (centre) in action for Maritzburg United. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
Evans Rusike (centre) in action for Maritzburg United. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

JOHANNESBURG - SuperSport United appear to have found the perfect replacement for Jeremy Brockie in the form of James Keene.

Matsatsantsa a Pitori are set to announce the the striker as their latest signing before the close of the transfer window period on Wednesday night.

A reliable source said the Englishman who has been key to the Clever Boys' recent upsurge with key goals will join SuperSport United.

“James Keene is going to SuperSport. Jose Ferriera (Wits CEO) and Stan Matthews (SuperSport United CEO) have both agreed on the deal," the source said. "Apparently Keene signed a pre-contract with SuperSport United who asked Wits for an early release of the player.”

Keene scored for Wits in their 4-1 demolition of SuperSport at the weekend and he will no doubt be looked at to fill the gap left by Brockie who joined Mamelodi Sundowns.

Matsatsantsa media officer Brian Moshoeshoe denied knowledge of the move: "Where did you get that? I don’t know anything about James Keene. He is still a Wits player. He even played this past weekend against us.”

In their effort to strengthen their attack further as they bid to get out of their current slump, SuperSport have also reached an agreement to sign Evans Rusike from Maritzburg United.

“Rusike is going to SuperSport United. Both clubs have agreed on the deal. All that's left is medicals and personal terms of the player. Maritzburg were not willing to let go of him but SuperSport offered them money they couldn’t refuse," the source told Independent Media.

Rusike has been one of the most consistent strikers this season and has scored seven goals so far. Maritzburg chairman Farook Kadodia confirmed they could lose Rusike.

“There is interest from one club in Rusike. Anything can happen between now and (Wednesday),” Kadodia said, adding that they are keen on getting Denwin Farmer to move the other way.

The defender will join the Team of Choice from Matsatsantsa in July.

“Yes it is true that we are in talks with SuperSport. We want him for the next season,” Kadodia confirmed.

Meanwhile, having also lost Xola Mlambo to Orlando Pirates, Wits could also see midfielder Ben Motshwari departing for the Buccaneers.

Pirates are apparently pushing hard to secure Motshwari. As it is, even if the deal fails to materialise by the end of the transfer window, Motshwari will be a Buccaneer next season. His current deal with Wits expires in 2019.

“Wits and Pirates are in talks about the possibility of concluding the Motshwari transfer. Pirates want to take him now but Wits are only willing to let him go at the end of the season. I can assure you though that Motshwari will be playing for Pirates next season,” a source close to the deal explained.

Said Pirates administrative manager Floyd Mbele: “We had a conversation with Wits, but it is not true that we are pushing hard to sign him now.”

Perhaps wary of being raided further, Wits have offered left back Sifiso Hlanti a new deal.

Hlanti has been a key member for the Clever Boys since joining them from AmaZulu three seasons ago as he helped them to Absa Premiership, MTN8 and Telkom Knockout titles.

Said his agent Sizwe Ntshangase: “They have offered him an extension. We still have to discuss terms with the player before we can sign.”

The Star

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