Following the sacking of Coach Madinda Ndlovu in the last minutes of this past season, some players at Township Rollers who were brought by the Zimbabwean gaffer are said to be already looking for teams as they risk rooting in the bench and possibly at the stands. This comes as the team is on the brink of appointing new mentor ahead of the new season.
Among the players set to leave the Popa camp are striker Jerome ‘JJ’ Ramatlhakwane and the dazzling attacking midfielder Dirang ‘Malam’ Moloi who is reported to have been invited to train with an un-named club in China.
Information passed to this publication reveals that Moloi has always been on the Chinese team radar but the stumbling block was his DRC team Don Bosco which was not willing to release him, luckily, Rollers shareholder and business tycoon Jag Dish Shah, is said to have bailed the player out of Don Bosco.
Moloi is said to have presented his letter of egress to the team management days after the man who recruited him was booted. Even though the future of the 30 year old midfielder with Mapalastina has always been in jeopardy after enduring a dull second half of the season, the club chiefs were yet to officially part ways with him.
The former Notwane and Mochudi Centre Chiefs player who had stints with the Asian and South African leagues was signed from Don Bosco of DRC in January for six months. His contract was to end this month, but he furnished the team with a letter before they could hopefully open a new chapter for negotiations or part ways.
However observers remain adamant that this was a calculated move by the player because he was conscious that the contract wouldn’t be renewed or it would not be as lucrative as it was when he was signed. The reasons being his performance never pleased the bosses at Rollers and also he could not be in the new technical team’s plans.
Informers, have revealed that the China offer seem too mouth watering for a player of Dirang’s status to resist and too high for Rollers or any other team to match. The lanky midfielder has in the past came out clear that football is a job that should put bread on the table. The Chinese league is one of the emerging ones, just like the Indian League and both are willing to break the banks for players, but only if players perform to expectations.
When arriving at Rollers, Moloi was the best paid player at the club and in the country, he was reported to be earning P30, 000 per month plus winning bonuses which stretched his take home to P40, 000. Moloi has played in the national team from an early age, he has a rich resume and it is no surprise he could get himself an offer. He is expected to acclimatize easily in China despite his attitude of getting “home sick”. He has in the past played in Cyprus.
However, the main undoing for “Mthakathi” as he is also known to his legion of fans could be age, he is already in his thirties and in modern football age plays a critical role in whether you secure a contract or not. His recent form is also a cause for worry.
The player was not at his level best with Mapalastina, a factor which may predict that he may not catch the eye in China. Efforts to get the Rollers officials to comment proved futile as the team manager Khumo Masonya’s mobile number was not available at time of going to print.
Athletics is one of the sporting activities that for many years has been consistently performing extremely well in international competitions. One of the reasons is the availability of qualified and experienced coaches, who have been working tirelessly on the ground to ensure that they scout talent and develop more athletes.
For the first time after eons, football clubs plying their trade in the elite league are walking in the shadow of the undefined with nothing concrete agreed and on sight before the commencement of the football season.