Former Bafana Bafana striker Sibusiso Zuma has urged Bidvest Wits’ Phakamani Mahlambi to make overseas move
Posted: 15 August 2017 Time: 09:01
Former Bafana Bafana player Sibusiso Zuma has urged Bidvest Wits’ Phakamani Mahlambi to make a move to Europe as soon as possible, and not wait too long like Mamelodi Sundowns’ Khama Billiat.
Mahlambi is one of South Africa’s most promising players and has been on trial with Bongani Zungu’s Portuguese outfit Vitoria Guimaraes for the last three weeks and, at this stage, it’s unclear if they will sign him.
Whether or not he gets signed, Zuma is hoping that the player will not be kept in the PSL longer than he should. Zuma played his football in Denmark and Germany and he says the experience he gained there was priceless.
“There’s one player I love here in South Africa – Phakamani Mahlambi. I think that boy is out of this world. He is a good player. He has been struggling with injuries, but once that boy gets a stepping stone in Europe – a season or two – he can go on to play in Spain or England easily,” Zuma tells KickOff.com.
“He is a fast player, but he just needs to work on his finishing just so that he gets more goals in a season. If he can get eight or nine goals a season, then that will be good. Sometimes players wait too long to go to Europe. I thought Billiat would be gone by now, but he is still here in South Africa and that amazes me. If we can take Mahlambi there now, then that will be good.”
A growing number of players have been coming back home from Europe, while others are happy to stay in the PSL because the money is good enough. Zuma, however, has encouraged players to improve their knowledge of the game by going to play abroad and not only worry about money.
“I think the guys think they are getting enough in South Africa. But what about knowledge? You go there and you learn. You can learn a lot in just one season. You can see that you are a changed player in one season in Europe, but players would rather stay here. It’s a problem."
The former Orlando Pirates striker believes that if more players go overseas, Bafana will qualify for major competitions regularly.
"If we have more players in Europe, then we will qualify all the time for the World Cup and Afcon [African Nations Cup]. The quality of players we are taking overseas now is really promising, but we need to up the number. Then you will see the difference with our national team.”