'Pirates star asking for R263 000 salary'


Young Africans head coach Luc Eymael confirms there has been contact between him and Justin Shonga's agent regarding a move for the Orlando Pirates star.

The Zambian striker has not been playing at Orlando Pirates and is rumoured to be looking for a move away, and has been linked with a few other teams including Simba SC.

According to Eymael, who is head coach at Tanzanian giants Yanga, the only problem is the 23-year-old's salary demands of $15 000 (R263 362) per month.

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"We were in contact with Justin Shonga. We tried to sign him but his requests, his demands were very high, asking 15 000 US dollars," Eymael tells KickOff.com.

"I don't think we were going to be able to pay that. We are not able to afford him, and he will not also earn that money at Simba or somewhere else in Tanzania. But if he prefers to go to Simba than to come to Yanga that's his problem.

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"It seems that Pirates wanted 500 000 US dollars [R8.8-million] also to give him on loan. I called Mr [Irvin] Khoza two times to discuss with him but couldn't succeed to reach him, he didn't pick up my calls.

"Because the agent told me to call Mr Khoza, I did it. I sent him a message, but unfortunately he didn't come back to me.

"[Bernard] Morrison is rejuvenated at Yanga, why not Shonga? But I don't think he will get the 15 000 US dollars that he was asking from us there [at Simba], never!

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"I was interested in Justin Shonga for sure. I was interested in him to play with Morrison and another winger. We should have had a strong attacking line but I couldn't reach Mr Khoza and I couldn't speak with him, and I couldn't speak with Shonga himself.

"I couldn't get news from the agent after that. Perhaps he will go to Simba, I don't know. If he has a good contract, okay no problem for him, he will be our opponent, no problem."

Contacted for comment, the player's representative Karabo Mathang confirms there was interest in her client.

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"I'm prepared to say there were initial discussions with the team but there's nothing material that I can comment on," Mathang says.

Simba CEO Senzo Mbatha (formerly Mazingisa) denies that Yanga's arch-rivals are interested in the Chipolopolo striker.

"We don't need him," Mbatha says. "We never wanted him and we are not interested in his services."

Pirates could not be reached for comment through their official channels.

UPDATE! Pirates players' market values have been adjusted, according to transfermarkt.com – see where Shonga ranks amongst Bucs' top 10 below!

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