JOHANNESBURG. — Mamelodi Sundowns captain Hlompho Kekana says he was disappointed to see Zimbabwean soccer striker Khama Billiat moving to Kaizer Chiefs instead of heading abroad, where he deserves to be. Kekana feels a player with Billiat’s talent should be playing in foreign leagues, but the Zimbabwean international made the decision to swap Chloorkop for Naturena when his contract with the Absa South African Premiership champions expired.
Billiat, who has already come up against his former teammates in the Shell Helix Cup recently, will be a marked man again when Amakhosi visit Sundowns at Loftus Stadium in their opening league match of the season tomorrow (3pm).
“It was sad for me because with the quality he has he should be playing in foreign leagues easily. But we are different as people. Maybe he saw life differently.
“I believe in his ability more than he does,” Kekana says.
“I was so disappointed to see him going to Chiefs. He deserves to play in other leagues. I have no doubt that he can make it anywhere.”
Kekana says they will not allow Billiat to score against them. They know his tricks, so they will come up with a plan to stop him.
“It’s not going to be as easy as I want it to be. I have been with Khama for five years and it’s sad to see him in another jersey. It will be nice for him doing well for the club. I hope he does not score against us and we will never allow him to score.”
Meanwhile, it’s easy for Pitso Mosimane to rest on his laurels and believe in the squad that delivered Absa Premiership honours, but the Mamelodi Sundowns coach is not wired that way.
Mosimane, who has an ageing squad, has been busy in the market bringing in new players, most under the age of 25. And while many are questioning where these players will fit in at the club, the former Bafana Bafana coach is thinking about the future.
Musa Lebusa (25) has been signed from Ajax Cape Town and will give the side cover at left-back and in central defence. Lebusa, who captained the Urban Warriors last season, trained with Sundowns yesterday after completing his medical, but is unlikely to feature when the defending champions start their title defence against Kaizer Chiefs at Loftus Versfeld tomorrow.
Lyle Lakay (26), signed from Cape Town City, is seen as a successor at left-back for Tebogo Langerman, who is 32.
Sphelele Mkhulise (22), who played in the Shell Helix Cup against Chiefs, is expected to get first team opportunities this season after returning from a loan spell with National First Division side Richards Bay FC.
“We need to plan for the future while we are still using the senior players. We need to create the future for Sundowns,” Mosimane said.
“You must understand the age of Kekana, (Oupa) Manyisa, Ricardo (Nascimento), (Wayne) Arendse. That is why you can see that I am aggressive (in the market) on the younger ones. I don’t want to be caught up in a situation where it’s all old players.”
Mosimane has also signed Tristan Moses and Shungu Dutiro from Chiefs and Bidvest Wits respectively. Both players will play their football in the MultiChoice Diski Challenge, but are seen as future first team stars. Mosimane is also looking for a goalkeeper who is under 23, because Denis Onyango, Kennedy Mweene and Razak Brimah are all over 30.
It’s all about the future now for Mosimane