12 top buys in the PSL
Posted: 13 May 2014 Time: 12:31
KickOff.com looks at 12 signings that proved their worth in the recently-concluded Premiership season.
This list excludes players recruited on loan deals.
Grant Kekana (University of Pretoria)
Kekana has excelled on his return to University of Pretoria from SuperSport United, missing only one League game through suspension for Tuks. The 21-year-old defender also provided three goals and two assists for Steve Barker's outfit.
Bongani Zungu, Khama Billiat and Kennedy Mweene (Sundowns)
Zungu arrived from Tuks in a swap deal that saw Buhle Mkhwanazi and Siyabonga Ngubane go the other way. The 21-year-old has impressed with his creativity going forward, earning call-ups from national team coach Gordon Igesund.
Billiat has likewise shone on attack at Chloorkop after Downs clinched his signature from Ajax Cape Town.
Goalkeeper Mweene, meanwhile, also proven to be a top buy for the Brazilians in the offseason. The Zambian Africa Cup of Nations winner previously spent eight years at Free State Stars.
Hellings ‘Gabadinho’ Mhango (Bloemfontein Celtic)
The 21-year-old Mhango's eight goals in the League saw him claim Bloemfontein Celtic's top scorer and players' players accolades last night.
Anssi Jaakkola (Ajax Cape Town)
Jaakkola has been a revelation in his debut campaign in the South African topflight, saving the Urban Warriors, who narrowly beat the drop, on numerous occasions with his shot-stopping ability. The Finn is a strong contender of the Premiership Goalkeeper of the Season prize.
Moeneeb Josephs (Bidvest Wits)
Josephs has rediscovered his best form since joining Bidvest Wits from Orlando Pirates, with his displays prompting a Bafana Bafana recall for Chan and his nomination for the League's goalkeeper of the season award. 'Slimkat' deserves credit for shaking off Sport Minister Fikile Mbalula's public criticism of his performance at Chan, and he is expected to play a big role in his club's Nedbank Cup Final against Pirates on Saturday.
Issa Sarr (Platinum Stars)
Sarr has stood out in Rustenburg since his arrival from Cape Town-based Chippa United, anchoring the Dikwena midfield so that the likes of free-scoring Robert Ng'ambi and Solomon Mathe can get forward. The Senegalese ace was notably named Man of the Match in the MTN8 Final.
Thuso Phala (SuperSport United)
Phala capped off a productive season for SuperSport United in fine style, striking twice in a man-of-the-match-display against Polokwane City to ensure a top-eight finish for Cavin Johnson's under-fire men.
Siyabonga Nhlapho (Bidvest Wits)
Nhlapho's versatility has been a boon for Nedbank Cup finalists Bidvest Wits. The 25-year-old, who was snapped up from Jomo Cosmos, notched up 28 starts on the right side of defence and midfield, as well as in the centre of the engine room.
Asavela Mbekile (Moroka Swallows)
Mbekile added steel in the Moroka Swallows midfield following his arrival from Chippa United, with his displays prompting a maiden Bafana call-up for the country's ill-fated Chan campaign.
Clifford Ngobeni (Mpumalanga Black Aces)
Ngobeni revived his career with an influential campaign in Mpumalanga Black Aces' midfield. He previously spent 18 months on the sidelines due to a contractual dispute between Orlando Pirates and Golden Arrows.