Former Mpumalanga Black Aces chairman George Morfou has revealed how they almost signed Mamelodi Sundowns midfielder Themba Zwane.
Following his initial failure to break into a star-studded Sundowns, Zwane was loaned to AmaZayoni for the 2013/14 season.
According to Morfou, negotiations to permanently keep the player had already started when Sundowns realised the player's future potential.
"I'm very happy, well done to the boy, he deserves everything that he's getting at the moment," Morfou tells KickOff.com after Zwane was named 2019/20 PSL Footballer of the Season.
"I don't think I've seen a guy as hard-working as Themba. You will have to give that credit to Clive Barker. Clive Barker was the one that I can believe now got Themba the confidence that he needed to get to the next level.
"I know that when he arrived he was doing very, very well with us. But it was the coach behind him that got him into the best that he could be. And at the club I think he obviously enjoyed the environment. But it's because of the way our structure was in place and the way Clive Barker and his team around him got the best out of Themba at that time."
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Morfou reveals further: "We were very, very close to purchasing him from Sundowns at that time, then I think straight after Sundowns realised what his potential actually was, then they made a bit of a u-turn [laughs], which is obviously their right, he was their player.
"The initial agreement was that we were going to loan him, it was in a gentlemen's agreement, it wasn't in writing that should we want to buy him during the season then we could just come and start the negotiations.
"But because he was doing so well, Sundowns had opted not to allow that discussion to take place, which is good because look at what he has done for Sundowns. And Sundowns is a much bigger option than Aces was at that time. So everything happened for a reason and it all worked in the favour of Themba with the grace of God."
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